Republicans one step closer to tax overhaul but still face obstacles

FILE - In this Sept. 28, 2017, file photo House Ways and Means Chairman Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, arrives for a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. Brady, one of the chief architects of the sweeping tax revamp proposed by President Donald Trump and congressional Republicans isn’t yet saying whether promised cuts under the plan would be retroactive to the start of the year. “To be determined” was the response Oct. 2 from Brady. ( AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

The Republicans' plan for a major tax reform advanced on Thursday night after the U.S. Senate passed a $4 trillion budget on a party-line vote of 51-49.

The budget victory means President Donald Trump and the Republican party are one step closer to fulfilling their campaign promise to overhaul the tax code.

President Trump tweeted his praise for the Senate on Friday morning, saying, "This now allows for the passage of large scale Tax Cuts (and Reform), which will be the biggest in the history of our country!"

Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky was the only Republican to vote against the budget because it will increase the budget deficit by $1.5 trillion over the next ten years.

Because the Senate passed a budget using a fast-track process, they can now get a tax bill through with a simple 51-vote majority and without a single Democrat.

Seth Hanlon of the Center for American Progress noted the Republicans are one step closer to tax reform, but they still face a lot of obstacles.

Among them, the fiscal conservatives in the House who may oppose the bill because it is not revenue neutral.

"I think there’s a lot of deficit hawks in the House and we have to see if they put their money where the mouth is next week," Hanlon said.

Others have raised concerns that the tax bill will raise taxes on middle-class families, Hanlon added.

The House is scheduled to vote on the budget bill next week. House Speaker Paul Ryan has said he hopes to get a vote on a tax bill in early November.

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