On Thursday, House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-WI01 and House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady, R-TX, released the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Speaker Ryan delivered the following remarks during a press conference alongside Chairman Brady, members of the Ways and Means Committee, and House leaders:
First, I want to thank these families for taking time out of their day to join us. Welcome—it is great to have you here with us today. Fantastic.
You are who this is all about. This plan is for the middle-class families in this country who deserve a break. It is for the families who are out there living paycheck to paycheck, who just keep getting squeezed. You know, about half the country today is living paycheck to paycheck. And a lot more people are about a paycheck away from living paycheck to paycheck in this country. And this is going to help give people relief.
The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will deliver real relief for people in the middle—and people who are also striving to get there.
With this plan, the typical family of four will save $1,182 a year on their taxes. For many families, having an additional $1,182 more will make a real difference. That $1,182 more covers about a year’s worth of gas for your car. It covers your family’s phone bill for the year—depending on how much data, of course, your kids use. That $1,182 more—it can help you pay down your debt faster. It can help you start and renovate your home faster. That $1,182 more for the average family—that will help you put away for college. It will help you save for retirement. It will help you save for a rainy day.
With this plan, we are getting rid of loopholes for special interests and we are leveling the playing field. We are making things so simple that you can do your taxes on a form the size of a postcard. With this plan, we are making pro-growth reforms so that yes, America can compete with the rest of the world. But we’re also making it so that families like these that are here can have more take-home pay.
This is it. This is a very important and special moment for our country, for all Americans. Are we going to let defenders of the status quo win and see our country continue down this downward spiral? Or are we going to realize the promise of our country? Are we going to revitalize the American Idea? This is our chance to make sure that generations to come don’t just get by—they get ahead in this country.
Let me turn this over to the person who has lead this effort. I am so proud of this man and this committee in this room. I want to turn it over to the chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, and I want to thank all the members of the Ways and Means Committee for bringing us to where we are—for getting us to this point. Ladies and gentlemen, the leader of this moment, Kevin Brady, chairman of the Ways and Means Committee.
The office of the Speaker of the House also released this summary of the tax reform proposal:
For individuals and families, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:
- Lowers individual tax rates for low- and middle-income Americans to zero, 12 percent, 25 percent, and 35 percent so people can keep more of the money they earn throughout their lives, and continues to maintain 39.6 percent for high-income Americans.
- Significantly increases the standard deduction to protect roughly double the amount of what you earn each year from taxes – from $6,350 to $12,000 for individuals and $12,700 to $24,000 for married couples.
- Eliminates special-interest deductions that increase rates and complicate Americans’ taxes – so an individual or family can file their taxes on a form as simple as a postcard.
- Takes action to support American families by:
o Establishing a new Family Credit – which includes expanding the Child Tax Credit from $1,000 to $1,600 to help parents with the cost of raising children, and providing a credit of $300 for each parent and non-child dependent to help all families with their everyday expenses.
o Preserving the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit to help families care for their children and older dependents such as a disabled grandparent who may need additional support.
- Preserves the Earned Income Tax Credit to provide important tax relief for low-income Americans working to build better lives for themselves.
- Streamlines higher education benefits to help families save for and better afford college tuition and other education expenses.
- Continues the deduction for charitable contributions so people can continue to donate to their local church, charity, or community organization.
- Preserves the home mortgage interest deduction for existing mortgages and maintains the home mortgage interest deduction for newly purchased homes up to $500,000 – providing tax relief to current and aspiring homeowners.
- Continues to allow people to write off the cost of state and local property taxes up to $10,000.
- Retains popular retirement savings options such as 401(k)s and Individual Retirement Accounts so Americans can continue to save for their future.
- Repeals the Alternative Minimum Tax so millions of individuals and families will no longer have to worry about calculating their taxes twice each year and pay the higher amount.
- Provides immediate relief from the Death Tax by doubling the exemption and repealing the Death Tax after six years. Family-owned farms and businesses will no longer have to worry about double or triple taxation from Washington when they pass down their life’s work to the next generation.
For job creators of all sizes, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:
- Lowers the corporate tax rate to 20 percent – down from 35 percent, which today is the highest in the industrialized world – the largest reduction in the U.S. corporate tax rate in our nation’s history.
- Reduces the tax rate on the hard-earned business income of Main Street job creators to no more than 25 percent – the lowest tax rate on small business income since World War II.
- Establishes strong safeguards to distinguish between individual wage income and “pass-through” business income so Main Street tax relief goes to the local job creators it was designed to help most.
- Allows businesses to immediately write off the full cost of new equipment to improve operations and enhance the skills of their workers – unleashing the growth of jobs, productivity, and paychecks.
- Protects the ability of small businesses to write off the interest on loans that help these Main Street entrepreneurs start or expand a business, hire workers, and increase paychecks.
- Retains the low-income housing tax credit that encourages businesses to invest in affordable housing so families, individuals, and seniors can find a safe and comfortable place to call home.
- Preserves the Research & Development Tax Credit – encouraging our businesses and workers to develop cutting-edge “Made in America” products and services.
- Strengthens accountability rules for tax-exempt organizations to ensure the churches, charities, foundations, and other organizations receiving tax-exempt status are focused on helping people and communities in need.
- Modernizes our international tax system so America’s global businesses will no longer be held back by an outdated “worldwide” tax system that results in double taxation for many of our nation’s job creators.
- Makes it easier and far less costly for American businesses to bring home foreign earnings to invest in growing jobs and paychecks in our local communities.
- Prevents American jobs, headquarters, and research from moving overseas by eliminating incentives that now reward companies for shifting jobs, profits, and manufacturing plants abroad.
The House Ways and Means Committee will mark up the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act on November 6, 2017.