Trump, Republicans win key panel vote amid dramatic tax lobbying blitz

President Donald Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch Mc Connell    Kevin Lamarque  Reuters

President Donald Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch Mc Connell Kevin Lamarque Reuters

But Republican leaders said they have yet to round up the votes needed for passage in the Senate, where they hold a narrow 52-48 majority. GOP senators hope to pass that plan this week and approve a final bill agreed upon with the House before the end of the year.

"It's a challenging exercise", McConnell said.

The president was having lunch with some members of the Senate Finance Committee ahead of what was expected to be a series of contentious votes in the full Senate later in the week over proposed changes to the labyrinth US tax code. Two committee Republicans had said they were considering voting against the measure.

Democratic leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi, who had been due to sit down with Trump and GOP leaders at the White House Tuesday, abruptly pulled out of the talks, blaming an early morning tweet in which the President said he saw no possible deal to reconcile their demands with his program. But after President Donald Trump personally lobbied Republican senators at the Capitol Tuesday, the committee passed the bill with little fanfare other than a few protesters who tried to disrupt the committee meeting.

The ad urges people to call the five Republicans, who voted in favor of the bill, and says there's "still time to right this wrong" and "vote "no" on any tax plan that hurts our health care". In 2027, that would extend to all income groups under $75,000, as individual tax reductions expire.

Sen. Susan Collins of ME says she has won support to amend the Senate's sweeping tax bill allow homeowners to deduct at least a portion of their local property taxes on their federal tax returns.

The House of Representatives has already approved its version of the tax overhaul, but it differs in several ways from the Senate plan.

A group of moderate Senate Democrats are asking Republicans to work with them to refashion their tax bill into legislation they say would truly help the middle class. It would impose a one-time, cut-rate tax on corporations' foreign profits, while exempting future foreign profits from US taxation.

The change largely stems from the bill effectively getting rid of the Obamacare provision requiring most Americans to have health insurance or pay a penalty.

Despite the Budget Committee moving the bill forward, the TCJA is not assured to pass on the broader Senate floor.

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