The 27th Amendment tothe Constitution, ratified in 1972, prohibits Congress from giving itself a pay raise effective in the House term. The reason for this amendment, originally proposed in 1789 as an amendment to the Bill of Rights, is obvious. They did not trust Congress to disregard self-interest. Similarly, Article 2, Section 1 of the Constitution restricts the president.

Unfortunately, nothing prevents these folks from enriching themselves and their sponsors with a tax cut. In addition to the benefit of an immediate income tax cut jettisoning the estate tax, applicable to single estates over $5 million, would be a windfall for the special few. Estates like President Trump’s would save billions.

Consistent with the spirit of the Constitution, any tax cut should stipulate current representatives, senators, and the president are bound by existing law for four years. This provision would provide some assurance that tax cuts are for the public’s benefit. Of course this is fantasy.

A tax cut would probably impact more people than the failed health care fiasco and the math is easier to follow. That's assuming we see the bill’s continually changing specifics before another rushed 2 a.m. vote. Federal and state 2016 tax returns can be recalculated using the proposed changes. Who will fare better, you or U.S. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa?

Somehow Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid will be dragged into this exercise. The GOP never misses a chance to “save” these programs by reducing benefits. A Republican is president, so the federal deficit is irrelevant. Voodoo economics returns.

Robert McKanna

Bettendorf

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