Conservative Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) is still voting “no” on the Republican party’s new tax reform bill, even though party leaders have attempted to make adjustments to bring reluctant members from California and New York on board ahead of a vote on the final bill in the House of Representatives on Tuesday.
Rohrabacher and a few other members of the 14-strong California Republican delegation voted against the original House version of the bill, largely because of their objections to its partial repeal of the state and local tax (SALT) deduction, and the lowering of the cap on the mortgage interest tax deduction.
High-tax states like California and New York may see higher earners and wealthier homeowners pay higher taxes under the Republican plan — though these would also be offset, at least in part, by lower income tax rates.
Vulnerable Republicans in districts targeted by Democrats — especially in once-conservative Orange County, which Hillary Clinton won last November — are also reluctant to do anything that will alienate their constituents.
In an op-ed earlier this month in the Orange County Register, Rohrabacher explained his reasons for voting “no”:
If enacted, the current version of the bill would raise taxes for many of my constituents. It would do that in part by eliminating the deductibility of property taxes, income taxes and paid sales taxes.
I deeply admire the House GOP leaders, including Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady and Speaker Paul Ryan. Their motives are good, and their objective of increased economic growth is sound. But the bills that both the House and Senate are now considering, while reducing business taxes, don’t reduce the tax burden on individuals so much as shift it.
That creates winners and losers. Californians will be among the losers.
Rohrabacher is still a “no,” according to Bloomberg News, but there will be sufficient votes to allow the bill to pass the House. The bill is expected to proceed to the Senate, where a close vote before the end of the week could allow President Donald Trump to fulfill his promise to sign a tax cut by Christmas.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named one of the “most influential” people in news media in 2016. He is the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.