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Congress Approves Tax Overhaul: How Indiana Delegation Voted

The U.S. House chamber on Wednesday just prior to the vote on the GOP tax overhaul bill.

Republicans in Congress approved a sweeping and controversial $1.5 trillion tax overhaul this week. As NPR reports, the Senate voted early Wednesday along straight party lines to move the measure forward, with the House voting a second time Wednesday afternoon:

Republican lawmakers hoped to put the bill over the goal line a day earlier, after the House claimed victory on a 227-203 vote Tuesday afternoon, but hit a procedural hurdle. The Senate passed the bill with some slight tweaks in the early hours of Wednesday morning on a party-line vote, 51-48.

Here’s how Indiana’s Congressional delegation voted for the measure and what they said in response:

Senate

Sen. Joe Donnelly (D) – No

President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence, formerly Indiana’s Governor, put significant pressure on Donnelly to support the tax measure. In the end, the bill passed without support from any Democrats.

In a statement, Donnelly says he agreed with the president’s goals of reforming the tax code, but says this bill does not reflect those priorities.

Speaking on the Senate floor on Tuesday, Donnelly outlined his reasons for opposing the proposal:

“Instead of providing a tax cut that overwhelmingly benefits the middle class, this bill cuts taxes for the wealthiest Americans while raising taxes on a majority of families making less than $75,000 in the coming years,” he said.

Sen. Todd Young (R) – Yes

Young has long supported the tax overhaul. In a video statement, Young praised the bill’s measures, including the repeal of the Affordable Care Act individual mandate.

“This bill’s going to create a tax code that is simple, fair, and that allows Hoosiers to keep more of their hard-earned money,” Young said. “Throughout this process, I listened carefully to feedback from people across the state of Indiana. I’m glad to say this bill continues and expands support for a number of Hoosier priorities.”

Young notes those priorities include keeping deductions for charitable gifts and keeping tuition waivers for graduate students un-taxed.

House

Rep. Pete Visclosky (D) District 1 – No

“We will not be complicit in any effort to undermine access to affordable health care coverage or increase costs for millions of Americans,” Visckosky said in a Tweet prior to the vote.

Rep. Jackie Walorski (R) District 2 – Yes

“The truth is that this tax cut bill means a brighter future for the hardworking Americans who will have more money in their pockets and a better shot at the American Dream,” Walorski said on the House floor prior to the vote. “This isn’t just a good bill – this is a great bill. This isn’t the apocalypse – it’s a new day in America.”

Rep. Jim Banks (R) District 3 – Yes

“By passing this legislation, Congress has delivered on its promise to deliver sweeping tax reform to the American people for the first time since 1986,” Banks said in a statement. “I look forward to swift passage in the Senate and President Trump signing this historic legislation into law.”

Rep. Todd Rokita (R) District 4 – Yes

“This historic tax reform is going to help the American people keep more of their hard earned money, create more opportunity, and make American businesses more competitive at home and abroad,” Rokita said in a Tweet.

Rep. Susan Brooks (R) District 5 – Yes

Rep. Luke Messer (R) District 6 – Yes

“Under this plan, Hoosier families will see bigger paychecks, fairer taxes, and more jobs,” Messer said in a statement. “Obamacare’s individual mandate is crushing middle-class Hoosiers. By repealing it, we are bringing relief to low and middle-income Americans who have had to pay fines simply because they can’t afford skyrocketing premiums.”

Rep. Andre Carson (D) District 7 – No

“This bill is a failed opportunity to grow our economy, boost small businesses & help middle class families get ahead,” Carson said on Twitter just prior to the first vote. “Let’s reform our tax code to help working families succeed. Not to make the rich richer.”

Rep. Larry Bucshon (R) District 8 – Yes

“Hardworking Hoosier taxpayers are being unfairly punished with a tax code that has become too costly, complex, unfair and is full of loopholes and special interest tax breaks that rewards the well-connected,” Bucshon said in a statement. “Instead, we need a tax code that encourages the growth of American jobs, American wages, and American taxpayers. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will do just that, delivering a simpler, fairer, and flatter tax code.

Rep. Trey Hollingsworth (R) District 9 – Yes

“For too long, our country’s 70,000 page tax code has put Hoosier families and businesses at a disadvantage,” Hollingsworth said in a statement. “Today’s vote was a vote for bigger paychecks, more jobs, and a simpler tax code bettering the lives of all Hoosiers, enabling everyone to keep more of their hard-earned paychecks and empowering all to build better futures.”

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