Republicans struggle on spending bill

Much more than a glitch or a do-over was necessary to alter the first vote by the House in its

President Donald Trump as Scrooge Designed by Amanda Ulloa

But the president didn't sign the bill.

"We are making America great again", he said.

Mr. Trump thanked Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, inviting both GOP leaders to speak.

The bill passed by a vote of 231 to 188 and was later approved by the Senate before a stop-funding bill approved earlier this month was scheduled to expire on Friday.

At a Thursday press conference, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) denied that she is trying to bring about a Christmas shutdown to embarrass the Republicans after their Wednesday tax-reform victory. The bill passed along party lines, 51-48, with the final result announced by Vice President Mike Pence, who presided over the vote. The Senate passed the bill in the early hours of Wednesday and the House voted to pass the legislation Wednesday afternoon. The public can only guess at how much the president will personally benefit from the tax bill he is about to sign, because he has defied decades of bipartisan tradition by refusing to release his tax returns.

Also on Wednesday, Trump claimed the tax bill had fulfilled his campaign promise to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

The Senate is to vote on the assistance once Congress reconvenes in January.

The projection that the bill would add $1.5 trillion to the deficit over 10 years grows to $2 trillion if those individual tax cuts are made permanent, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center. Some of its provisions, such as lowering the corporate tax rate, would have been worthwhile if they had been paid for by closing loopholes or raising other federal revenue. "Hasn't been done in 34 years but actually really hasn't been done because we broke every record".

Opposition Democrats had the numbers to block the Republican bill in the Senate, theoretically giving them the ability to leverage concessions.

The president called it "above all else a jobs bill", contending that changes to the business tax structure would encourage more companies to relocate operations to the US and hire more workers. The standard deduction used by around two-thirds of Americans will almost double to $24,000 for married couples. It seems like they did, and added an $81 billion disaster relief rider, but Democrats didn't lift a finger to help their Republican counterparts pass this spending bill. The tax bill repeals requirement that individuals purchase insurance.

"Now a lot of that is because high income people own most of the shares of U.S. companies and because the corporate tax cut is so generous so that means that the owners of those corporations also get the tax cut and they're high income people for the most part", says Howard Gleckman from the Tax Policy Institute.

The most hard issue in the funding fight, said Republican Representative Tom Cole, is his party's demand that a big increase in defense spending be included in the stop-gap spending bill that is needed by Friday.

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