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Congressman Richard Neal

Representing the 1st District of Massachusetts

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Neal on “Squawk Box”: Democrats will Take a Stand in Tax Reform

February 2, 2017
Press Release
“You’re not going to do tax policy with one party and leave the other side out”

WASHINGTON, DC – Ways and Means Committee Ranking Member Richard Neal (D-MA) this morning appeared on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” and discussed the Democratic perspective on tax reform, and prospects for reform in the 115th Congress.

Key Excerpts

On bipartisanship in tax reform:

“I hope that there will be an opportunity here to work with the Republicans on tax reform. There’s broad agreement on what’s wrong. There’s less agreement on the path to take to correct what’s wrong.”

On what tax reform might look like and timing:

“Well, as you cut the rates obviously what becomes more important is the loss of deductions, exclusions, and preferences in the code. And then you’ll see, I think, as those opportunities arise, whether or not the trade-offs are worth it.

“We are now seeing three competing proposals, at least in terms of verbiage: one from the White House, one from the Republicans in the House, and a bit of a stand-offish approach in the United States Senate. So, I’m hoping as this takes form there will be an opportunity for all of us to participate, highlighting again that the current American tax code on the personal and corporate side really is underproductive and inefficient.”

On lowering the corporate tax rate:

“Well, the key phrase is ‘revenue-neutrality.’ Can you cut the corporate tax rate, and recall that President Obama proposed cutting the corporate rate to 28 percent. Dave Camp proposed cutting it to 25 percent. And what you found in the difference there, what seemed like a miniscule three points, was a world of change and many of the individuals who had sought corporate tax relief then took the position that it wasn’t worth it.”

On tax reform overall:

“Let me say, based upon long experience here, the poisonous atmosphere now that has really gone on for almost two decades, I think needs to abate. And you’re not going to do tax policy with one party and leave the other side out because in the end, if that happens, all that means is the side that doesn’t prevail, they simply do a reset and prepare for the next round.”