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Financial Planning > Tax Planning > Tax Reform

GOP Touts Simpler Tax Filing as a Goal of Reform

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Congressional Republicans stuck with talking about general tax reform goals Wednesday at a briefing on their new tax reform framework.

The 9-page framework document says little about specific taxes or tax breaks. House Speaker Paul Ryan, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other speakers revealed no additional details at the briefing. But they did talk about their goal of a simpler tax code.

(Related: Democrats Blast Trump Tax Plan, Worry About ‘Rothification’)

The House Ways and Means Committee and the Senate Finance Committee will have jurisdiction over efforts to write a tax reform bill.

Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, said he was in the House when Congress was developing the 1987 tax reform package.

Thanks to that package, “we went forward like never before,” Hatch said.

Hatch said he would like the effort to develop the new tax reform package to be a bipartisan project.

“I’m hoping we can bring Democrats and Republicans together in the best interests of our country,” Hatch said.

Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, the House Ways and Means chairman, said he hopes Congress can get a tax package to President Donald Trump by the end of the year.

For more than a year, Republicans have been promoting the idea of simplifying the tax code enough to let most Americans file their taxes with a “fair, simple ‘postcard’ tax filing.”

Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C. (Photo: House)

Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C. (Photo: House)

Brady held up a sample postcard tax filing at the briefing.

If Congress passes the kind of tax reform package outlined in the framework document, “nine out of 10 Americans will be able to file their taxes using this simple postcard-style process,” Brady said.

Ryan also talked about the goal of simplifying the tax code enough to make postcard-style filings possible for most taxpayers.

Many of the speakers talked about why simplifying the tax code would be good for the country.

Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., said he pictures Sherry, a single mother of two, when he’s thinking about why Congress needs to reform the tax code.

“Tax reform is about making sure the Sherries of the world, the single mothers of the world, have the opportunity to see more of their money stay in their paychecks,” Scott said.

Scott said tax reform supporters should refer to tax reform with the hashtag “#keepyomoney.”

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