By Gabrielle Seunagal
Hours ago, Vice President Pence made headlines by shortening his trip to Hawaii so that he could fly back to Washington D.C. Pence’s original plans to visit the USS Arizona in Pearl Harbor have also been put on hold. Speculations about the swift change of the Vice President’s plans have been attributed to the Friday deadline that Congress must meet in order to pass a new spending package. The impending doom of a government shutdown awaits them if they are not successful. Additionally, the White House is scheduled to release a new tax reform plan this week. Given the following, it makes sense of Pence to return to Washington earlier than he originally planned.
President Trump made it clear that the spending bill should also include a “down payment” on the Southern border wall. Many people believe that this course of action complicates the crafting of the spending bill. Despite these claims, the President insists that the border wall will serve as an effective tool to halt the flow of drugs and other negative influences into this nation. Democrat leader Chuck Schumer declared that Republican leaders should tell the Commander in Chief to deal with the wall “at a later time.”
Moreover, critics have already slammed the upcoming tax plan before its release. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin alleged that the plan would increase the country’s national debt and add to the deficit. Other reports indicated that carbon tax could serve as an offshoot of the tax plan. Democrats favor this idea, while Republicans oppose the notion. So far, there are no answers as to whether or not the tax plan will be “revenue neutral.” The President recently announced that the plan’s rate will range between 15% and 20%, but other reports have cited 28%.
The gridlock and discord in Washington should serve as alarming to each and every American. A government shutdown is a mark of failure and the Friday deadline does not give Washington officials much time to get it together. The confusion associated with tax reform is a very negative indicator, given the catastrophe that ensued from health care reform. Regardless of party affiliations, leaders in Washington need to put egos aside and work together for what is in the best interests of the American people who voted them into office. Hopefully, the Vice President’s early return will engender a positive effect on the success of the spending bill and tax reform.
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