Mnuchin: Tax Reform Derailed by Health Care Failure

Mnuchin now says 'not realistic' tax reform gets done by August
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 18, 2017 12:50 PM CDT
Mnuchin: Tax Reform Derailed by Health Care Failure
US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin now says tax reform unlikely to be completed by August.   (Uwe Anspach/dpa via AP)

It looks like the US won't have a reformed tax system by Labor Day after all. Steven Mnuchin tells the Financial Times that having a tax reform bill ready for President Trump's signature by August is "not realistic at this point." Two months ago, the Treasury secretary said the administration hoped to have tax reform done by the time Congress goes on recess in August, CBS News reports. The Los Angeles Times notes it's a known fact that lawmakers get more done when they have a vacation coming up. But Mnuchin says the failure to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act pretty much blew up that timetable.

While Mnuchin says he still expects tax reform to happen sometime in 2017, there's no guarantee that's realistic either. The last major tax reform effort—back in the 1980s—took more than two years. The setback means US companies will have a harder time planning their budgets, as it's uncertain they'll get that Trump-promised lower tax rate. Trump's tax reform plan calls for lowering taxes for both businesses and individuals. Mnuchin, a former Goldman Sachs banker, says that won't increase the US deficit because the money lost from lower taxes will be offset by economic growth. (More tax reform stories.)

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