It was close, but House Republicans passed a budget, allowing the push for tax reform to continue.
By passing the measure, 216-212, Republicans unlocked procedural powers that allow the Senate to pass a tax bill with just 51 votes — and evade Democratic filibusters. But even with the ability to sideline Democrats, the GOP faces a daunting task as it tries to rewrite the tax code.
Heading into the vote, it was unclear whether enough GOP lawmakers would support the measure. A band of Republicans from high-tax states vowed to vote “no” on the budget unless GOP leaders scrapped plans to curb the state and local tax deduction currently in the GOP’s tax proposal.
Speaker Paul Ryan and his top lieutenants were banking, however, on enough Republicans being jazzed about tax reform to back a fiscal blueprint many despise.