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Senate passes budget framework for the tax reform

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Senate Republicans passed just under $4 trillion budget plan Thursday, the first major step in the direction of a tax reform package promised by President Donald Trump.

Approval of the non-binding plan allows it known to the Senate with a special procedure called “budget reconciliation” that would prevent a Democratic filibuster.

“Tonight is completed and we first step to the exchange of our broken tax code, creating a comprehensive, fiscally responsible budget to help the Federal government on a path to balance,” said Senate majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. “We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to replace an error control code that keeps Americans working again, for you.”

The Senate plan, approved on a 51-49 vote, calls for $473 billion in cuts from Medicare over 10 years and more than $1 trillion from Medicaid.

If fully implemented, would cut the plan expenditure of more than $5 trillion in the next 10 years, with an average of about $540 billion per year, over the term of the plan, according to a Congressional Budget Office.

Sen Rand Paul, R-Ky., was the only Republican to vote against the bill, joining all 46 Democrats and two independents.

“We can not spend our way to prosperity,” Paul said in a statement. “I’m going to fight for the biggest, boldest tax cut we can give more, but I could not ignore in good conscience vote for a budget that the spending caps that the law of the land for the years and easy to do so, it was important.”

Sen. Thad Cochran, R-Miss., back to Washington after the treatments for urological problems in the vote for the measure. Other Republican moderates-including Sens. John McCain of Arizona, Bob Corker of Tennessee and Susan Collins of Maine — supporting the efforts.

Like to vote for #budget blueprint to give Congress an opportunity to pass comprehensive #taxreform. https://t.co/mX5YTxuuVW pic.twitter.com/hVxFrMyFVY

— Senator Thad Cochran (@SenThadCochran) October 20, 2017

Tax reform has always taken a top issue on the GOP agenda, an even greater urgency with the failure of the party to carry out its long-standing promise to dismantle former President Barack Obama’s signature medical law. Republicans have said that the loss of taxes would be politically disastrous, in next year’s elections, when control of the house of representatives and the Senate on the game.

The house passed its version of the budget plan last week. He argues for tax cuts, not add to the deficit and a couple of the tax would be to rewrite the measure with $200 billion in spending cuts over the next ten years. Both plans include to enable a determination of the oil and gas exploration in Alaska Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-NY, blasted the GOP’s framework, as “evil and backwards.”

“It is the burden of the rich shifts and puts it directly on the back of the middle class, and blows to boot a hole in the deficit,” Schumer said in a statement. “I think it will go down in history as one of the worst budgets Congress has always passed.”

Fox News’ Chad Pergram and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

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