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After Long Night, Senate Passes Tax Reform

After hours of discussion on the Senate floor, early Saturday morning the United States Senate secured the 50 votes needed to pass its tax bill. The vote was a close 51-49.

Earlier this week, the Tax reform bill passed a major procedural hurdle on Tuesday afternoon, when the Senate Budget Committee approved the bill for a full floor vote.

Around midday on Friday, Majority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) announced that “we have the votes,” setting the field for the vote later that day. This followed heated negotiations to try and sway several holdouts, including Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Arizona), Steve Daines (R-Montana), and Ron Johnson (R-Wisconsin).

Several changes added to the bill as it raced toward the finish line. As reported by Axios, they include "keeping the alternative minimum tax for corporations, increasing the pass-through deduction, allowing up to $10,000 in property tax deductions and increasing repatriation rates compared to an earlier version of the bill."

In addition, the Senate bill has more individual tax brackets at seven compared to the House’s four. The Senate bill merely seeks to change the estate tax, as opposed to the House bill that proposes to eliminate it entirely by 2024.

The House will now vote on Monday at 6 p.m. EST about going to conference with the Senate.

About Author: David Wharton

David Wharton, Editor-in-Chief at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington, where he received his B.A. in English and minored in Journalism. Wharton has over 17 years' experience in journalism and previously worked at Thomson Reuters, a multinational mass media and information firm, as Associate Content Editor, focusing on producing media content related to tax and accounting principles and government rules and regulations for accounting professionals. Wharton has an extensive and diversified portfolio of freelance material, with published contributions in both online and print media publications. Wharton and his family currently reside in Arlington, Texas. He can be reached at David.Wharton@thefivestar.com.
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