Senator Jon Tester was not pleased with the 1.5 trillion-dollar tax overhaul that passed through the Senate by the slimmest of margins 51-49, a few days ago. Before the vote occurred, the Montana Senator took to Twitter to display the 479-page document, and lambasted that he’d only received the bill a mere twenty-five minutes earlier, with the vote scheduled for a few hours later.
Tester isn’t alone in his outrage against the new bill. Claire McCaskill, (D-MO) said in an in-depth interview with the Washington Post that, “The bill is not helping teachers, and police officers, and construction workers. The bill is helping wealthy people, and he (President Trump) is among the people it is helping.”
Indeed, not a single Democratic senator voted in favor of the tax bill – a sign of unity rarely seen from the party in the past few years. The bill, which passed through the senate but contained key differences from the one passed through the house of representatives last month, has proposed to lower the top tax rate on corporations from thirty-five to twenty percent. In addition, it would make drastic changes to the American healthcare system, as well as strip back regulations against drilling in places like Alaska.
Tester’s tweet from December 1 has received over one-hundred and fifty thousand retweets in a three-day span, and seems to nicely encapsulate the frustration Democratic senators felt toward the bill, namely, that sections of the bill include place-holders written in pen along the margins.
For his part, President Trump seemed unconcerned that not a single Democrat crossed the aisle to vote in favor of the GOP tax bill. Trump tweeted that he was looking forward to signing the bill into effect before Christmas.
The next step will likely see the house and senate to vote to go to a conference committee. From there, lawmakers will discuss the two bills and come up with a proposal that then both the house and senate will need to approve. It’s likely that compromises within the bill will need to be reached, though the details of what will change and how it will affect the plan are currently unknown.