Feb 11, 2017

The closed-door debate on Paul Ryan's border tax

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

House conservatives have spent the past few days in closed-door meetings in New York sorting out their differences over the Republican legislative agenda. What we know about the private conversations, per a source in the room:

  1. They remain divided on the border adjustment tax, the most controversial — and important — part of Paul Ryan's tax plan. A source in the room tells Axios: "There was a consensus on the desire to move tax reform quickly but there are still a number of unanswered questions on the border adjustment tax... There are a number of members that believe we should move forward with reducing both personal and corporate tax rates without the border adjustment provision."
  2. They largely agree on the need to repeal Obamacare swiftly. Our source says there was "consensus that we need to move forward with a repeal vote that is at least as robust as what we have previously passed in 2015 and that we should move quickly."

The two groups gathered: The House Freedom Caucus (~40 ultra conservative Republicans) and the Republican Study Committee (178 Republicans). The two have overlapping members, and the conservative Heritage Foundation sponsored the gathering.

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