Lindsey McPherson

Tax Bill Will Include 4th Tax Bracket on High-Income Earners, Ryan Says
Republicans’ tax framework had left the possibility open, but speaker suggests decision is to add one

Speaker Paul D. Ryan said Friday that an upcoming tax overhaul bill will include a fourth income tax bracket for high-income earners, but he declined to reveal what the tax rate for that bracket will be. 

“The fourth bracket that the president and others are talking about that we’re going to do, we’re working on those numbers,” the Wisconsin Republican said on “CBS This Morning.” He added later in the interview that numbers “are going to be finalized in a matter of days.”

Brady and Ryan Mulling Big Gamble on Key Tax Deduction
State and local tax deduction has its fans among rank and file, though

House Republican leaders face many decisions regarding details of a tax overhaul but perhaps none more immediately consequential than whether to roll the dice and try to eliminate the state and local tax, or SALT, deduction.

House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady of Texas and Speaker Paul D. Ryan have made it abundantly clear they’d prefer to get rid of the deduction, which allows taxpayers to deduct what they pay in state and local property taxes and either state income taxes or sales taxes.

Pelosi Wants ‘Urgent’ Update on President’s Nuclear Weapons Authority
Minority leader says proposal is about presidential powers, not about Trump

Status: Urgent.

That’s how House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi is categorizing the need to update the law guiding when the president of the United States can use nuclear weapons.

Ryan Threatens to Keep Members in for Christmas to Finish Tax Overhaul
‘I don’t care. We have to get this done,’ speaker says

Nothing seems to push lawmakers to get their jobs done and pass legislation more than the threat of having to be in Washington over the holidays. 

Knowing this, House Speaker Paul D. Ryan made it clear Thursday that Congress staying in session over Christmas is an option if they have not advanced a tax overhaul bill by then. 

Why Trump’s Immigration Demands Haven’t Changed the Dynamics on Hill
Prospects for a bipartisan bill were already grim

President Donald Trump’s decision to push for his border wall as part of an immigration deal — after previously saying it would be dealt with separately — would, at first glance, seem to lower the probability of a bipartisan accord.

But the prospects were already grim. So Sunday’s release of Trump’s immigration policy priorities caused no major shift in the dynamics on Capitol Hill. 

Curbelo: Regulatory Fix to Bump Stocks a ‘Big Mistake’
Florida Republican at odds with Paul Ryan

Rep. Carlos Curbelo on Wednesday called Speaker Paul D. Ryan’s push for a regulatory fix banning bump stocks “a big mistake.”

“If we agree that this should be banned we should have the courage of our convictions and proceed with legislation that will make that explicitly clear,” the Florida Republican said.

Ryan: Regulatory Bump Stocks Ban ‘Smartest, Quickest Fix’
Comments indicate House may not vote on issue

Speaker Paul D. Ryan said Wednesday, in his most direct comments on a potential bump stock ban, that he thinks a regulatory fix is the best approach.

“We think the regulatory fix is the smartest, quickest fix,” the Wisconsin Republican said at a news conference.

GOP Tax Messaging Heavy on Business Benefits
‘It all leads to the same end,’ speaker said of trickle-down effect of tax legislation

CHESTERTOWN, Md. – “Cutting taxes is great for the businesses to make businesses more money. But how is that going to lower my taxes, or make sure it comes down to me?” That was the question a 20-year-old Dixon Valve & Coupling employee posed to Speaker Paul D. Ryan on Thursday.

Visiting the company’s headquarters to promote the GOP’s still developing tax legislation, Ryan told the employee that he plans to lower taxes on individuals so they take home more of their paychecks. Then he quickly pivoted back to his primary message.

Congress Likely to Defer to Firearms Bureau on Bump Stock Ban
'There’s a big regulatory question,' Speaker Paul D. Ryan said Thursday

CHESTERTOWN, Md. — Don’t expect Congress to take a quick vote banning bump stocks, the device that allowed the Las Vegas gunman to shoot his semi-automatic rifles at a rate resembling the rapid fire of a fully automatic weapon.

Speaker Paul D. Ryan said Thursday at a press conference here that he and many other lawmakers are just learning of the existence of bump stocks.  Congress first needs to examine how they are even allowed under current law, the Wisconsin Republican said, suggesting that a regulatory fix may be preferred over congressional action.

What It Costs: 2017 Tax Overhaul Edition
How to pay for big tax cuts is a complicated process

How to pay for policy proposals lawmakers want to enact is an age-old question in Congress that has killed or stalled countless ideas. That question is now a dark cloud hanging over Republicans as they seek to overhaul the tax code.

Tax writers say they plan to offset massive tax rate cuts for individuals and businesses by eliminating scores of deductions and credits that litter the tax code. But they have publicly identified only a few provisions they want to repeal.

House Leaders Retreat to Corners on Gun Policy
Las Vegas shooting does not change framework of debate

Congressional leaders retreated to their familiar positions on gun safety Tuesday, with Republicans saying it is an issue of mental health and Democrats calling for stricter background checks.

Sunday night’s mass shooting at a Las Vegas country music festival was the deadliest in American history, with at least 59 people killed and more than 500 injured.

Steve Scalise Presides Over First Whip Meeting Since Shooting
Deputies say he has not missed a beat

After his emotional return to the Capitol last week, House Majority Whip Steve Scalise showed up to work Monday ready to jump right back into his leadership role.

Scalise led the weekly whip team meeting that for the past few months had been run by his deputy, Patrick T. McHenry of North Carolina.

Pelosi Again Asks GOP Leaders to Form Select Committee on Gun Violence
Democrats renew calls for legislation to prevent gun violence after Las Vegas shooting

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi is again asking Republican leadership to form a select committee on gun violence after another mass shooting incident.

The Democratic leader sent a letter Monday to Speaker Paul D. Ryan following the mass shooting in Las Vegas, in which a lone gunman killed at least 58 people firing from his hotel room in the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino onto a crowd attending a country music festival. More than 500 people were injured during the shooting, the worst in American history.

Pelosi Evokes Scalise Shooting in Opposition to Gun Silencer Bill
Majority Whip returned to the Capitol Thursday

On the day House Majority Whip Steve Scalise returned to the Capitol, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi evoked his shooting in explaining her opposition to GOP legislation to relax restrictions on gun silencers.

“They put it under the façade that it’s for hunters,” the California Democrat said. “Hunters need armor piercing bullets? They need silencers?

Scalise Gets Emotional Welcome Back to the House
Thanks colleagues for their ‘outpouring of love, of warmth, of prayer’

House Majority Whip Steve Scalise returned to the Capitol Thursday to a standing ovation from his colleagues as he walked out on the House floor on crutches to deliver an emotional speech announcing his plans to officially return to work. 

“You have no idea how great this feels to be back here at work in the people’s house,” the Louisiana Republican said.

GOP Unified on Tax Overhaul — for Now
Freedom Caucus clears path to move forward

Most rank-and-file Republicans seemed pleased initially with the tax overhaul framework their leadership presented Wednesday, but the nine-page document leaves a lot of questions unanswered that could unravel GOP unity in the weeks and months ahead.

Key among the remaining questions is how much revenue the tax plan would raise or lose, the answer to which will determine how much of their legislation can be made permanent policy under the budget reconciliation rules.

GOP Tax Framework: 20 Percent Corporate, 35 Percent Top Individual Rates
Nine-page document provides few new details

The Republican tax overhaul framework calls for cutting tax rates to 20 percent for corporations, 25 percent for small businesses and 35 percent for high-income individuals. 

The nine-page document provides only a few other new details about GOP plans for rewriting the tax code. Many of the policies outlined in the framework are ones included in the House Republicans’ “A Better Way” plan released last year. 

Are Trump, GOP on Same Page on Bipartisan Outreach?
Tax overhaul, debt ceiling could test overtures

President Donald Trump is reaching out to Democrats as his party struggles to deliver on key legislation, but rather than embrace that strategy, congressional Republicans keep returning to the same playbook that has failed to give their team a win.

Fresh off another Senate failure to repeal and replace the 2010 health care law, Republicans are moving from one partisan plan to the next. On Wednesday, Trump and GOP congressional leaders will unveil a framework for overhauling the tax code, a measure they plan to advance using the budget reconciliation process.

Full GOP Tax Proposal Will Wait Until Later
Outline to be released this week, but full treatment awaits budget resolution

If the tax overhaul framework congressional leaders and White House officials are releasing Wednesday fails to appease rank-and-file member calls for more details, House Republican leaders may find themselves still short of the votes needed to pass a budget. That’s especially problematic given that tax writers are not planning to unveil a full tax plan until after the House and Senate pass a reconciled budget.

“After the unified Republican plan is announced on Wednesday, the House and Senate will turn toward passing a budget that includes reconciliation instructions that will ensure that we can deliver tax reform to the president’s desk by the end of the year,” House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady told reporters Monday during a break from a retreat the GOP committee members held to discuss the tax plan.

Democrats May Sink FAA Extension, Hurricane Tax Relief Package
Minority support needed to pass measure under fast track procedure

Legislation that would reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration for six months and provide tax relief to victims of recent hurricanes could fail on the House floor Monday evening amid Democratic opposition. 

The minority party’s support is needed to pass the measure under a fast-track procedure known as suspension of the rules. Two-thirds support is required for passage on the suspension calendar, meaning at least 50 Democrats would need to vote “yes” if all 240 Republicans support the legislation.