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Republicans Unveil, Applaud Tax Cut Details

Brooks: Elimination of several deductions will yield simpler tax code

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Republicans have finally unveiled details of their long-awaited tax bill, and will start committee hearings next week:

The bill keeps the top two tax brackets, but compresses the other five brackets into two: 12 and 25-percent. Indiana Congresswoman Susan Brooks (R-5th) says a near doubling of the standard deduction not only cuts taxes, but keeps a promise to simplify them, because fewer taxpayers will need to itemize to reduce their tax bill.

The proposal abolishes several deductions. Brooks says she's concerned about eliminating an incentive to build businesses in poor neighborhoods. The bill also caps the mortgage deduction at a half-million dollars, and eliminates tax breaks for adoptions and medical costs.

Brooks cautions she's still digesting a 30-page summary of the 400-page bill, but says she believes it'll boost economic growth. Most of the other Republicans in Indiana's delegation followed suit, with Rep. Jim Banks (R-3rd) predicting the bill would encourage "consistent and robust economic growth."

Rep. Todd Rokita (R-4th) calls the outline "a key step forward in fixing our overly complicated tax code," while Rep. Luke Messer (R-6th) tweeted a picture of himself playing high school football, noting that it's been that long since the last major overhaul of the tax code.

Indiana Democratic Chairman John Zody dismisses the plan as a "handout" to the wealthiest taxpayers.

Rep. Susan Brooks (R-5th) (Photo: Eric Berman)

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