On Tuesday, while the Republican presidential candidates were taking shots at each other in Las Vegas in the latest debates, Paul Ryan and other bipartisan lawmakers on Capitol Hill were putting forward the omnibus bill, a tax and funding bill.
The 2009-page omnibus bill was approved by a bipartisan committee and is expected to pass on Friday when the House will vote on the massive spending and tax bill. In the meantime, the government is only funded through Wednesday, so lawmakers will expectedly be working on a stop-gap spending Wednesday.
According to some, the omnibus bill is a victory for both Democrats and Republicans with both sides claiming wins.
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The “Cadillac Tax” on premium healthcare plans is postponed, along with the medical device tax which was placed under a moratorium for two years. The Obama administration was counting on those two to fund Obamacare. Democrats are happy that the wind and solar energy companies’ tax breaks will be extended for five years. Democrats are also pleased that the wind protection tax credit has been extended for two years. The Republicans claimed a major victory with a lifted ban on oil exportation from the U.S.
However, according to TheBlaze, “The package … would increase the deficit by hundreds of billions of dollars by extending numerous popular tax credits without paying for them.”
Democrats also claimed victory because the child tax credit and earned income tax credits will continue, as well as the continuation of the American Opportunity tax credit.
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What is controversial and missing from the budget is any language that would bar funding for President Obama’s Syrian Refugee Resettlement program, which may lead some Republicans to vote against the bill on Friday. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) told The Hill that “There’s a lot of reason for Republicans to vote for it,” although he would not speculate as to the number of Republicans who would eventually vote for the bill.
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