Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Cracks in House Republican Border Adjustment United Front Emerge. Sad!

Pity poor Kevin Brady.  His friends are ditching him.

Sad!  Un-American!  

I'll pause here for your sniffles. . . .

Today, Republican Jim Renacci (R-OH), a member of Brady's Majority on the Ways and Means Committee called for hearings on the Border Adjustment Tax plan. The so-called Brady Plan. Ouch, imagine thinking for yourself!  According to Politico (Renacci demands hearing on border-adjustment proposal):

"Rep. Jim Renacci (R-Ohio) said he has several concerns with the proposal and 'it would be important, if we’re going to move forward on something, to have a hearing and hear the arguments for and against.' Renacci said he’s concerned the proposal is 'picking winners and losers,' that it may violate World Trade Organization agreements and also has questions over 'who ultimately ends up paying for' the proposal. 'I think having hearings would help answer some of those questions,' he said.  'I keep asking [for a hearing] and I know other members are asking as well.'" [Politico links may not let you in.]


But there's more:

"Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady responded: 'I haven’t heard of any demands' for hearings. 'I have assured everybody that, as we work forward, we will be holding hearings on key aspects of tax reform,' said Brady." [Emphasis added]

Let's not forget that Brady is in "listening" mode.  Makes you wonder what his "not listening" mode is like.

Hey, Brady, if you're still "listening", maybe you should take this on board, also from Politico:

"Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen told lawmakers today 'there's great uncertainty' over how the value of the dollar would be affected by the border adjustability provision of the House Republican tax reform plan. 'I know that there have been discussions and academic work in connection with the border tax that suggests that an appreciation of the dollar could fully offset … a tax change that raised the cost of imports and provided a comparable export subsidy. And in principle that could provide a full offset,' Yellen said during her semi-regular appearance before Congress. But she cautioned: 'The problem is there’s great uncertainty with how, in reality, markets would respond to these changes. A strong set of assumptions is needed to believe that markets would fully offset those changes. It’s very difficult to know just what would happen. There is more than trade that affects a country’s exchange rates. Market participants’ expectations matter.'” 

Janet Yellen on currencies.  Pah, what does she know?!

And more signs of open revolt (Politico had a busy day!):

"Republicans on the House subcommittee overseeing monetary policy are not yet sold on the argument that a stronger dollar valuation could offset the increased costs companies might face on imported goods under a border adjustment tax. Rep. Andy Barr (R-Ky.), the chairman of the House Financial Services Monetary Policy and Trade Subcommittee, told POLITICO that he and several members of his subpanel have 'questions' about a border adjustment tax's effects on the dollar — and that his subcommittee plans to assert its jurisdiction on the issue. 'On the tax policy piece of that, clearly that’s not within our jurisdiction, that’s a Ways and Means issue,' Barr said. 'But on the theory behind a VAT or a border adjustment tax and the balancing that would occur, that is clearly a question that’s squarely within the jurisdiction of our subcommittee to investigate.' Subcommittee Vice-chairman Roger Williams (R-Texas) agreed the subpanel should take a look, saying, 'We’re going to get started here this next week. We’ve got to look at all those sort of things. It’s all tied in with the proposed tax reform.' . . . . Barr added that Reps. Bill Huizenga (R-Mich.) and Claudia Tenney (R-N.Y.) are the other subcommittee members who want answers about border adjustment, and that he would discuss the matter further with Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady." [Emphasis added]

Oooh, jurisdiction fight!  This is the legislative equivalent of a cat fight.  Look at all the Republicans thumbing their noses at Brady.  Isn't life grand?!

While Rome was burning, Peter Roskam spoke to the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) today. He apparently told the group that his constituents love the BAT plan.  They love it!  Can't wait for Election Day, Peter.  Then they can really tell you how much they like it.

Hey, Roskam, maybe your misinformation tour needs to be rethought if the other Republicans aren't going to back you up.  Did you think about that before you decided to do as you were told???

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