Reaction to passage in the Senate of the Republicans’ tax agenda has been swift in Connecticut. Both Connecticut senators, along with all of their Democratic colleagues, opposed the bill, which was passed at 2:00 am Saturday morning, with no hearings.
Senator Chris Murphy, in a statement, called the legislation “a disaster for the economy.”
“The lion's share of this bill benefits a handful of wealthy elites, while actually driving up costs for millions of working people,” he went on. “This bill jacks up health care premiums, raises taxes for sixty percent of middle income earners, and increases the national debt by over a trillion dollars. Billionaires and corporations do great, but most everyone else in Connecticut will do worse.”
Murphy urged Republicans to go back to the drawing board and work across the aisle to craft new, bipartisan tax changes.
Senator Richard Blumenthal was equally blunt.
“This bill drives deeper divisions – creating more income inequality and uncertainty, engendering increased anger and anxiety, and undermining democracy,” he said on Twitter. “The feeble claim that it will spur jobs and economic growth is magical thinking – delusion or deception at an enormous price.”
He condemned the legislation as particularly damaging to Connecticut, because it eliminates the state and local tax deduction, and will also leave homeowners with crumbling foundations without the relief of a tax deduction.
Governor Dannel Malloy was also swift to condemn the legislation, calling it an “abomination” that is a “full-out assault on working people.”
“It deals a serious blow to affordable healthcare by repealing key provisions of the Affordable Care Act, which will leave 13 million more Americans uninsured and raise health insurance premiums at the same time,” he said in a statement. “Another gruesome fact about this bill is that it does not pay for itself, falling well short of generating enough economic growth to cover the $1.5 trillion hole it adds to our national deficit.”
The Senate and House bills must now be reconciled in conference, and the resulting legislation must be approved by Congress before it goes to the president’s desk for signature.