Tax Reform Not Included In Obama, Congress Meeting 


While there had been some hope of immediate moves towards United States corporate tax reform after the mid-term election results, the first joint meeting on November 7 between President Barack Obama and Republican lawmakers, who will now control both sides of Congress, appeared to yield no such results.

Building on the tax reform work done in the Republican-led House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee and President Obama’s own proposals, it has been suggested that bi-partisan moves could be made to progress reforms that would result in a reduction to corporate tax rates, particular given the general view that only such a tax cut would provide a long-term solution to the recent wave of corporate inversions.

On November 5, during a press conference following the election results, President Obama said that he was “eager to work with the new Congress to make the next two years as productive as possible,” and to agree on “tax reform that closes loopholes and makes it more attractive for companies to create jobs here in the US.”

On his part, Mitch McConnell (R – Kentucky), the probable new Senate Majority Leader, in his press conference in Louisville, singled out tax reform as one of the potential areas of cooperation between Republicans in Congress and the White House, while House Speaker John Boehner (R – Ohio) stressed that one of the “most pressing challenges that we face [is] a broken tax code that’s driving jobs overseas.”

In the event, however, the readouts by both sides of the bicameral, bipartisan meeting held by President Obama on November 7 failed to mention tax reform at all. The spotlight was, instead placed on immediate matters, particularly on the President’s commitment to take action on immigration reform, against Republican wishes.

Boehner pointed out that “unilateral action [on immigration] by the President … will also make it harder for Congress and the White House to work together successfully on other areas where there might otherwise be common ground.”

In the event, it may be that an agreement on tax reform has been seen to be too great an enterprise for the “lame duck” Congress, but that it can still be picked up next year when the new Congress begins its work.

Source: tax-news-Tax Reform Not Included In Obama, Congress Meeting

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