The chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee is appearing to punt President Donald Trump’s new middle class tax cut plan to 2019.
Rep. Kevin Brady made clear Friday that the additional 10 percent middle class tax cut, which raised eyebrows when the president first mentioned it last week, would be a priority if the GOP maintains control of both chambers of Congress in 2019.
“We expect to advance this in the new session of Congress if Republicans maintain control of the House and the Senate,” Brady said on CNBC.
In so doing, the Republican from Texas was effectively acknowledging that it’s unlikely to be on the agenda for the post-election lame duck session, even if Trump has signaled otherwise.
Numerous Republican aides, including those who work for the House and Senate tax-writing committees, have been referring questions about Trump’s proposal to the White House.
But on Friday, Brady suggested the committee had been working “for several months” with Trump, “on the design of the 10 percent middle class tax cut.”
And he was specifically pressed on that point by CNBC during the interview.
“We have,” Brady reiterated. “I wish the media would call once in a while to ask about these things. So, yes the president has been having these discussions. He’s really focused on the middle class. We’ve been working with the White House and the Treasury on some ideas of how best to do it.”
This may in part be an effort to combine what Trump has been floating on the campaign trail since a rally last Saturday in Elko, Nevada, with the tax bills that have already passed the House that the GOP has dubbed “Tax Reform 2.0.”
In a statement issued Tuesday, Brady had said the committee would be working with Trump and his team on the design of the next round of tax cuts.
“As Republicans retain the House and the Senate, that’s our goal and that’s what we’re working for. When that happens, you’ll see us move and advance that,” Brady said of the idea offered by Trump.
“What President Trump is looking at is a 10-percent cut focused on middle class workers and families for this reason: he still believes middle class families are the ones always in the squeeze,” Brady said. “They make too much to get government help, as many do. They don’t make enough to really to be able to grow the way they want.”
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