To reform America’s tax code in 2014, or leave it alone for another year, that is the question – whether it’s nobler in the mind to suffer through another year of this broken system or to take up arms against a sea of troubles during a crucial election year?
House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) is in the midst of a significant test in his mission to overhaul the U.S.’s tax code at the upcoming GOP retreat, which is set to begin at the end of January in Cambridge, MD. Camp not only faces the obvious challenges against tax reform from the Democratic Party, but he still must convince his own Republican leadership, specifically House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), that pushing for tax reform is even worth the effort in 2014.
GOP leaders have recently been down playing tax reform and instead are advocating a somewhat cautious strategy with regard to 2014 since it is an election year for Congress. In 2014, Republicans have a chance to take back control of the Senate as well as expand their majority in the House. So instead of focusing on crucial issues such as tax reform, as Camp would have hoped for, Republicans have been advocating an approach concentrating mainly on President Obama and his exceedingly unpopular healthcare law.
Other challenges to extensive tax reform in 2014 involve the calendar. This upcoming year marks a pivotal election in Congress and also the end of Camp’s reign as Chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means. With 2014 being an election year, lawmakers are scheduled to leave Washington in the fall to go blaze the campaign trail. Thus, Camp wants to try to work out a potential tax reform bill early on in 2014, preferably following the late January GOP retreat.
When the GOP leaders return from their upcoming retreat in early February they hope to have established a solid approach for 2014. Will tax reform be one of the issues Republicans focus on in the coming year? Only time, and a semi-relaxing weekend at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort on Maryland’s eastern shore, will tell.
Jordan Silverman – 1-2014