Nov 2, 2017

The biggest problem in the GOP tax plan

House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady. Photo: Alex Brandon / AP

Republican House members tell me that the most politically explosive issue, by far, in the tax plan to be released tomorrow is the over-complicated treatment of "pass-through entities" (often small businesses that report business income on personal returns). Some influential Republican House members are saying final language on the tax bill's treatment of those situations will disadvantage some small firms and could imperil GOP support for the plan.

"This is supposed to be a simplification. It's not," a House GOP member told me. "It's going to be the most explosive thing once members hear about it."Why this matters: Pass-through entities — many of which are small businesses — are a big faction of Republican supporters. The White House and House leadership knows this provision will be problematic with some members.Other things I can confirm:The House tax bill will not repeal the individual Obamacare mandate, even though it would bank them a good chunk of change and even though President Trump called for it today.Corporate rate cut to 20 percent will be permanent, even though the Ways and Means Committee flirted with making the corporate cuts temporary. (That would've been a big political problem.)The expansion of the child tax credit — an Ivanka Trump priority — made it into the bill.The bill repeals the estate tax — though it's phased in.And after much angst, Republican tax-writers have decided there's too much political pain in meddling with 401k retirement benefits.

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Coronavirus dashboard

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  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 p.m. ET: 766,336 — Total deaths: 36,873 — Total recoveries: 160,001.
  2. U.S.: Leads the world in confirmed cases. Total confirmed cases as of 3 p.m. ET: 153,246 — Total deaths: 2,828 — Total recoveries: 5,545.
  3. Federal government latest: The White House will extend its social distancing guidelines until April 30 — Rep. Nydia Velázquez diagnosed with "presumed" coronavirus infection.
  4. State updates: Virginia and Maryland issued stay-at-home orders to residents, joining 28 other states — Florida megachurch pastor arrested for refusing to call off mass services.
  5. World updates: Italy reports 1,590 recoveries from the virus, its highest ever.
  6. In photos: Navy hospital ship arrives in Manhattan
  7. What should I do? Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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Cuomo: Engaging in politics during coronavirus crisis is "anti-American"

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said during a Monday press briefing that he won't get into a political tussle with President Trump — calling it "counterproductive" and "anti-American" — as his state deals with the most confirmed coronavirus cases in the country.

The backdrop: Trump said during an appearance on "Fox & Friends" earlier Monday that Cuomo has received high polling numbers during the outbreak because New York has received federal aid.

Maryland and Virginia issue coronavirus stay-at-home orders

Data: Axios reporting; Map: Danielle Alberti/Axios

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan and Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam issued stay-at-home orders on Monday, with exceptions for residents engaged in essential services, including health care and government functions.

The big picture: The states are the latest to announce policies to enforce social distancing, which have affected almost 250 million Americans. More than 1.5 billion people worldwide had been asked to stay home as of last week.

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