GOP Senator Predicts Tax Overhaul on Christmas Eve

Heller expects debate on tax code rewrite will run into December

Nevada Sen. Dean Heller predicts some December arm-twisting on tax legislation. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A Republican member of the Senate Finance Committee thinks an overhaul of the tax code will pass this year — on Christmas Eve.

“So, here’s my prediction: This is best case scenario, all right? I believe we’re going to pass tax reform on Dec. 24th,” Nevada Sen. Dean Heller said Wednesday. “I believe leadership is going to tell us you’re not going home for the holidays until you pass tax reform.”

Heller, who’s facing a tough re-election challenge next year, was speaking at a Hispanics in Politics forum in Nevada.

The Silver State senator had been asked about the likelihood of a federal tax overhaul becoming law.

“Give me the 23rd or the 24th, that’s when tax reform is going to be passed. It’ll be retroactive, we’re going to lower rates, we’re going to try to decrease some of the regulations that we have,” Heller said.

He also said he expected a significant number of Finance Committee hearings prior to any markup, with real legislative action less likely until October on the Senate side of the Capitol.

“I’ve had more meetings already on tax reform than I ever did on health care,” Heller said.

“This is what I predict,” he added. “We’re going to hold hearings on tax reform, on the tax-writing committee in September. It’s my understanding there’s going to be about a half-a-dozen hearings on that, which is great.”

Heller described himself as “all in” behind the effort to update and simplify the tax code.

“The House has to move forward first,” he said. “They should do so in September. The Senate will then move after the House does in October.”

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