The U.S. House of Representatives motioned to approve the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act on Wednesday by a vote of 224 to 201. The voting on the polarizing piece of legislation largely fell along party lines, with most Republicans in favor of it and all Democrats against.
    While providing immediate tax relief for most Americans, in 10 years’ time the new law’s individual income tax relief provisions will sunset, which will mean an overall greater tax burden on lower-earners.
    According to the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation, by 2027, all individuals earning less than $75,000 will see reduced after-tax income compared to what they make currently. Those making between $30,000 to $40,000 and $40,000 to $50,000 will see their income decline by 0.6 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively. In Livingston County, the average salary for women is $37,502, and the average salary for men is $47,461.
     Wednesday’s passage was the second such successful vote on the bill in the House — it was sent back to the lower chamber due to guideline violations discovered when it went to the Senate. After the first House vote Tuesday, Adam Kinzinger, Illinois’ representative of the 16th Congressional District, voiced his support of the measure in a press release.
    “Our current tax code is over 30 years old and our economic growth is stagnant,” he said. “Today, I voted in favor of the House’s ‘Tax Cuts and Jobs Act’ to provide tax relief to families, small businesses, and individuals here in IL-16 and across the country, and to give our economy the jump start it so desperately needs.”
    But Kinzinger’s rosy prognosis is not shared by a number of non-partisan analyses, nor even by the voting public — according to FiveThirtyEight, which aggregated opinion on the tax bill from surveys by CNN, Quinnipiac University, Morning Consult, ABC/Washington Post and YouGov, only 32 percent of Americans are in favor of the bill while nearly 50 percent are against it.
    “Nearly 70 percent of IL-16 residents pay the standard deduction,” Kinzinger said. “This tax plan doubles the standard deduction, repeals the death tax, and consolidates tax brackets to put money back into the pockets of more Americans. According to the Tax Foundation, this tax plan will create more than 37,000 new, full-time jobs here in Illinois.
    “Families in my home district and around the country will benefit from a new family credit that helps with everyday expenses, and will also provide streamlined education benefits to help them save for and better afford college tuition and education expenses, including apprenticeships.”
    The Tax Foundation’s web report, however, anticipated just over 14,000 new full-time equivalent jobs following the bill’s passage. Further, per Data USA, an online service that collates U.S. government data, the aforementioned average income of men and women, as well as the median household income of $54,254, means that by 2025, the average resident will receive a reduced shared of their income.
    But the GOP is banking on support for the bill rising come next February, when most Americans should expect to see an immediate lower tax withholding.
    “On January 1, Americans are going to wake up with a new tax code,” House Speaker Paul Ryan said. “On February 1, they are going to see withholdings go down, so they are going to see bigger paychecks.”
    In his release, Kinzinger noted that there were “still a few issues to be worked out” in the bill, but nevertheless called it “an important step forward to simplify our tax code and make it a more fair system for hard-working Americans.”