White House 'super focused' on tax reform, says Mnuchin
(ShareCast News) - US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Tuesday that the White House was considering backdating its tax reform proposals to 1 January in an effort to boost the nation's economy.
Mnuchin, who had insisted earlier on Tuesday that tax overhaul would be a certainty before year's end, told CNBC that backdating was "something we are considering and it would be a big boon for the economy."
The White House and Congress were said to be working together on the drafting of reform legislation after the Republican party hit by several roadblocks en route to the passing of its proposed tax reform bill.
"We're going to get this done by the end of the year," Mnuchin said, adding that the Trump administration was "super focused" on the goal after its three-month extension of the debt limit and government funding was approved last Wednesday.
Tax reform was a key campaign point in Trump's presidential bid, where he promised to cut personal income taxes, slash corporate rates and offer a one-time repatriation tax in an effort to sway companies into returning cash parked overseas back to the US.
However, if the party's bill was passed, Republicans would still face significant difficulties, including how the party would anticipate adjusting the budget in light of the massive amounts of revenue it had just lost to it as a result of the tax cuts.
Trump campaigned on the promise of cutting the corporate tax rate to 15%, but Mr Mnuchin said that the goal would be difficult to achieve.
"I don't know if we'll be able to achieve that given the budget issues. But we're going to get this down to a very competitive level," said the Treasury Secretary.
Reports from inside the Oval Office also indicated that the Republicans would be willing to use the process of reconciliation, wherein a simple majority vote in both the House and the Senate would be sufficient to allow for expedited passage of certain budgetary legislation, if the tax reform bill was unable to garner the 60 votes it required to be ratified.