Senate Passes $1.4 Trillion Tax Cut Legislation

Following Senate tax vote U.S. bishops urge congressional fix of “fundamentally flawed” bills

"We're heading down the homestretch", McConnell told reporters on Thursday. "This is not a flawless bill, but it is one that would deliver much-needed reform to our tax code, grow the economy, and help Americans keep more of their hard-earned money".

The Senate bill passed early Saturday after last-minute changes were made to the legislation to win the support of almost every Republican.

But the effort stumbled on Thursday when Republicans acknowledged that Senate rules would not permit them to add a mechanism to trigger tax increases in coming years if the bill fails to boost the economy enough to generate sufficient revenues to pay for tax cuts.

Mr Trump wants that to happen before the end of the year, allowing him and his Republicans to score their first major legislative achievement of 2017, despite controlling the White House, the Senate and the House since he took office in January.

But McConnell's assurances to Flake on DACA aren't the only check he seems to have written that he will not be able to cash unilaterally.

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But with Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) and Flake now supporting the bill, McConnell is expressing confidence it will pass on Friday night. The amendment would raise how much these businesses could deduct off the top of their tax bill, from the 17.4 percent now in the Senate bill to 23 percent.

Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, nodded in agreement. One would ensure the passage of the so-called Alexander-Murray legislation, a bill that would fund Cost Sharing Reductions for Obamacare.

That would not have killed the bill. Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) would hand states $2.25 billion a year to subsidize the cost of individuals requiring the most expensive medical attention.

What wasn't clear Friday afternoon was what, if anything, Sen.

With a mandatory 20 hours of Senate debate nearing expiration, the Republican lawmakers, who control the chamber, could move to a final vote late in the day after a procedural vote starting at 11 a.m. EST (1600 GMT) and a potentially chaotic "vote-a-rama" on tax bill amendments offered by both Republicans and Democrats. Their bill would be the biggest overhaul of the USA tax system since the 1980s.

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It appears as if Republicans may not have satisfied Corker and just made a decision to accept that he would vote no.

Despite the hurdles, rank-and-file Republicans were still optimistic that they could approve the bill this week and agree this month to final legislation with the House of Representatives, which their party also controls. It is similar to a provision in the House-passed bill.

On the individual side of the tax code, the top tax rate paid by the highest-income earners would be cut slightly.

The tax overhaul is seen by Mr Trump and Republicans as crucial to their prospects at mid-term elections in November 2018, when they will have to defend their majorities in Congress. The current Senate bill completely eliminates the federal deduction for state and local taxes, a popular deduction in the Democratic-leaning states of New York, New Jersey, California and IL as well as many wealthy suburbs nationwide.

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Prof Herculano-Houzel of Vanderbilt University in the U.S. , added: "I would bet money on a large dog over a cat any time". Another oddity is the bear - its brain is about 10 times larger than a cats, but has a similar amount of neurons.

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