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Trump Poised for Tax Boost As Senate Narrowly Passes Republican Tax Bill: U.S. Senate

Updated:2017-12-21 10:50:05    Source:www.tannet-group.comViews:264

It is reported that the US Senate narrowly passed the Republican tax bill in the early hours of Wednesday morning, but celebrations were on hold in the White House due to a delay in the legislation hitting the president’s desk.

The Senate voted 51-48 - with no Democratic support - to approve the landmark legislation, which is also President Donald Trump’s last chance of passing a major law this year and an issue set to feature heavily in the 2018 midterm elections.

However, a revote in the House of Representatives means another delay before the president can sign the bill. On Tuesday afternoon, the House passed the bill 227-203 and sent it to the Senate - but three provisions did not comply with Senate rules.

The Senate passed the legislation without the provisions, with all Republicans other than John McCain, who is recovering from chemotherapy, voting in favor. The House is expected to approve the bill on Wednesday.

The delay was a gift for the Democrats, who have argued that the legislation - which increases the deficit by 1.5 trillion US dollars - is being rushed through without proper debate or planning.

Democratic Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said the passage of the bill "taught us about how not to legislate", and condemned the legislation as "sloppy" and "partisan."

Why is it politically important?
The Republicans have hailed the bill as a major legislative victory ahead of the 2018 midterm elections, after a year of disappointments, most notably over healthcare reform. 

Democrats claim the legislation is designed to benefit businesses and wealthy individuals like the president, while Trump counters that it will create jobs and boost the American economy. By not voting for the bill, Democrats will be accused by Republicans of supporting high taxes on middle-earners.

The Republicans argue that tax breaks for big business will lead to more investment, higher wages and more jobs; the Democrats say the cuts will be used for share buybacks and bigger dividends, benefiting only shareholders. The stock market has risen sharply on expectation of the bill being passed.

The bill also repeals the Obamacare mandate, meaning Americans will not be fined for not taking out health insurance. This has huge repercussions for affordability of the Obamacare system, and will likely result in fresh efforts to fully repeal the healthcare reform in 2018. (Source: CGTN)

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