House Republicans pushed through a $1.5 trillion tax cut Tuesday, advancing the most consequential legislation of the Trump presidency toward likely passage in the Senate.
The vote ticked past a majority, to 227-203 Tuesday afternoon as the final vote was gaveled.
Just 12 Republicans voted against the final conference report in the House. Among them were Reps. Rodney Frelinghuysen of New Jersey, the House Appropriations Committee chairman, Rep. Darrel Issa of California, and Rep. Dana Rohrabacher of California.
All three of them represent high-tax states where some constituents could get slammed by a provision that caps the deduction for state and local taxes.
There was just one GOP opponent outside of the Democratic-leaning states of New Jersey, New York, and California – Rep. Walter Jones of North Carolina.
President Trump lauded House Republican supporters on Twitter. ‘Congratulations to Paul Ryan, Kevin McCarthy, Kevin Brady, Steve Scalise, Cathy McMorris Rodgers and all great House Republicans who voted in favor of cutting your taxes!’ he wrote.
Not a single Democrat voted for the GOP-crafted conference report – a steep partisan split that is already leading to questions about whether the cuts will be able to endure for the long term.
The White House maintained that the president could be facing a tax increase, even as it said his business would fare well.
‘We expect that it likely will, certainly on the personal side, could cost the president a lot of money. Again, the president’s focus hasn’t necessarily been at all on himself,’ said White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
Pressed on whether the billionaire president would have to pay more, despite the doubling of the estate tax exemption, changes for ‘pass through’ corporations, and the top rate reduction, Sanders responded: ‘I said that in some ways, particularly on the personal side, the president will likely take a big hit, but on the business side he could benefit. But the biggest focus for this White House has been to make sure all Americans are better off today, after this tax package passes, then they were beforehand.’
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin sat in the House chamber for a portion of the final debate.
President Trump could sign the measure as early as Wednesday if Senate passage proceeds as planned.
The Republican-controlled U.S. Congress began voting on Tuesday on the biggest overhaul of the U.S. tax system in more than 30 years, with little standing in the way of the party’s first major legislative triumph.