After almost a year as president and almost no legislative victories, Donald Trump is finally on the brink of his first major legislative victory.
The Senate narrowly approved a sweeping overhaul of the tax law, a $1.5 trillion tax bill. Republicans claim it would raise wages, give middle-class families a big tax cut and boost economic growth.
But is it actually as beneficial to the average American as the GOP is claiming it to be?
Not really, says the average American.
An NBC News/WSJ poll, conducted before the vote, found more people have developed a dislike for the new tax bill over the past two months. Only 24 percent of Americans polled said it was a “good idea,” while 41 percent believed it was a “bad idea.”
The GOP bill dramatically slashes the corporate tax rate to 21 percent from 35 percent and it will be permanent. In contrast, Tax Policy Center found nearly half of all American taxpayers, 53 percent, will be paying more under the Republican bill than they are now by 2027.
Republicans claim a typical family of four earning the median family income of $73,000 will receive a tax cut of $2,059. But Vox's Tara Golshan explains how the claim is slightly misleading:
"While that’s true in the first year, the tax cut diminishes over time and ultimately disappears altogether in 2025, when Republicans sunset almost all the individual tax relief provisions."
The tax bill also guts the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare). Since the GOP could not repeal Obamacare, Vice News reports the bill repeals "the so-called 'individual mandate' which levied a tax penalty on people who choose not to buy health insurance, a provision which helped insurance companies spread the cost of caring for the sick to the healthy."
Democrats, including Diane Feinstein, have condemned the bill, saying the plan "raises taxes on millions of middle-class Americans."
To review, the #GOPTaxPlan:— Sen Dianne Feinstein (@SenFeinstein) December 19, 2017
• Unfairly harms Californians by limiting state and local deductions.
• Raises taxes on millions of middle-class families.
• Balloons the federal deficit.
The Senate will vote on this bill in a matter hours. It's a disaster.
Soon, the Senate will vote on a damaging bill that gives tax cuts to corporations at expense of middle class families, & sets the stage for cuts to Medicare, Medicaid, & Social Security. This bill is Washington's culture of soft corruption at its absolute worst—I'm voting NO.— Kirsten Gillibrand (@SenGillibrand) December 19, 2017
A vote for the Republican tax bill is a vote for:— Kamala Harris (@SenKamalaHarris) December 20, 2017
-Tax cuts for corporations at the expense of middle-class families
-13 million more uninsured Americans
-Increasing the deficit by $1 trillion
I oppose this conference report with every bone in my body. This tax bill is a $2.3 trillion holiday gift for Wall Street, the rich, and the wealthy. Conceived in darkness and birthed with the help of donors and funders. This bill is not for the people. It is not tax reform.— John Lewis (@repjohnlewis) December 19, 2017
Thumbnail Credits: Reuters/ Aaron P. Bernstein