Walking Out, Returns, and “More Power, Please”

Doesn’t look like the shutdown will end anytime soon. After walking out of his own White House meeting with congressional Democratic leaders, President Trump dismissed talks as “a total waste of time.” No one seems to have any idea what will happen next.

Reopening the IRS. Meanwhile, the Democratic-controlled House voted to fund the Treasury and IRS for the rest of the fiscal year. Eight House Republicans backed the measure. Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell has refused to allow a Senate vote. The White House says it will call back IRS workers, start the tax season on time at the end of the month, and pay refunds. And a Treasury workers union is suing to block its members from having to work without pay.  

Will House Democrats be able to roll back parts of the TCJA? The Hill predicts they’ll likely give it a try, but as TPC’s Howard Gleckman noted, “I think Democrats are going to be pretty careful about it.” For starters, as Ways & Means committee member Rep. Bill Pascrell of New Jersey told The Hill, “We’re going to depend a lot on hearings… I think they’re important to bring out the truth and the facts.”

Two House Democrats would  require presidents, vice-presidents, and nominees to release 10 years of tax returns. Reps. Anna Eshoo and Bill Pascrell proposed a bill to require nominees and officeholders to share their 10 most recent federal income tax returns

The President would like more tariff powers, asks Congress to support him. In his State of the Union Address, Trump plans to urge Congress to give him expanded power to retaliate against non-tariff barriers to American exports. White House advisor Peter Navarro and officials from the Commerce Department developed the proposal. It would increase presidential authority to raise international duties without congressional approval.

The American Bankers Association dims its outlook for US growth. The ABA’s advisory committee of 15 economists revised its forecast for 2019 and 2020. They now expect GDP growth and monthly job gains to slow and project a 20 percent chance of a recession by the end of  2019.

China will cut taxes for its small companies. As the economy slows, the country will cut taxes for small and micro-sized companies by $29 billion a year for three years. The cuts will include reductions to the corporate income tax, the value-added tax, and other corporate taxes. 

For the latest tax news, subscribe to the Tax Policy Center’s Daily Deduction. Sign up here to have it delivered to your inbox weekdays at 8:00 am (Mondays only when Congress is in recess). We welcome tips on new research or other news. Email Renu Zaretsky at [email protected].