LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - The District 19 Texas representative Jodey Arrington has high hopes for a Republican tax plan that has just been laid out by the House of Representatives.
Presented by the House Ways and Means committee on Thursday, the tax plan has been described by many sources as sweeping tax code re-write that shows a $1.5 trillion plan delivering tax cuts to corporations and saves money for middle class families.
The plan has a focus on businesses as many of the cuts go towards corporations, according to a report from The New York Times. One of the biggest attention-getters is a cut in the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 20 percent.
But when it comes to the individual level there are large benefits for people who lie on certain tax brackets as it is.
"For starters, (taxpayers) will pay less in taxes and keep more of their hard-earned money. The biggest tax cuts are focused on the lower-income and middle-class folks," Arrington said in a Skype interview with KCBD NewsChannel 11. "And I think another one would be small businesses, because we are predominately small businesses and they get a significant tax break."
A major change in the proposed tax code is claiming the child tax credit. According to The NYT filers would have to provide a work-eligible social security number rather than a taxpayer identification number.
This may also change eligibility for an estimated three million children in working families.
But there is a little more assistance for those who qualify for those credits, Arrington said. There is also a double standardized deduction for working families in the U.S. The proposed bill would change the standard deduction from $12,000 to $24,000 for a married couple.
"So the first $24,000 is tax-free -- that's a big deal," Arrington said. "Because most of the folks out in West Texas are in the high 40s to $50,000 median family income."
But this tax plan has not come without criticism from the other side of the aisle. Nancy Pelosi, the democrat house minority leader and representative from California's 12th District, call this plan an assault on middle-class families in the U.S.
Pelosi described the plan in a Thursday news conference as one that gives more money back to corporations than it does to lower and middle class families.
"The republicans want you to believe they are cutting taxes on the middle class," Pelosi said in an Associated Press live feed news conference. "But republicans are plundering the middle class and middle class families to give trillions of dollars in tax cuts to corporations."
Arrington called the comments unnecessary and typical of a democrats such as her. He went on to say those who would benefit the most are those in the lower tax brackets.
Even though there could be an estimated $5 trillion in lost tax revenue, there are ways the proposed bill could offset those losses, he said. With those offsets there is also a $1.5 trillion placeholder that would help in economic growth.
"If we grow the economy by just one percentage point that's $3 trillion over 10 years," Arrington said. "That $1.5 trillion place holder, that's over 10 years, so if we just grow a half of a percent we'll just grow the remaining cost to the tax cuts so it will be budget neutral."
Though Pelosi's and other democrat's criticisms do not weigh heavy on Arrington's mind there are a few doubts he and some colleagues have in getting this all the way to the president's desk.
Republicans in the Senate have already started drafting their own tax bill that would be quite a change from what the Congress already has. Tennessee's Senator Bob Corker has doubts on the current plan and said it may add to an already large U.S. deficit.
"As I have made clear from the beginning of this debate, it is my hope that the final legislation — while allowing for current policy assumptions and reasonable dynamic scoring — will not add to the deficit, sets rates that are permanent in nature and closes a minimum of $4 trillion in loopholes and special interest deductions," Corker said in the NYT's report.
However, Arrington is hopeful that the House would be able to get this proposed bill out and passed by Thanksgiving, he said.
It may even be within the next week or so the proposed bill could be voted on and onto the next state.
"Obviously the Senate lost some confidence there in my experience over Obamacare repeal, where they missed that opportunity but I don't think they're going to miss this opportunity," Arrington said. "I think there's a lot riding on it and by the end of the year I'm hoping we can get it done and to the president's desk. That's the goal, but we'll get it out of the house, that's what I'm most in control of and have greatest influence over."