1. Florida Politics
  2. /
  3. The Buzz

House passes tax bill as Florida members vote party line

12 Republicans opposed the legislation, but none from Florida.
House Speaker Paul Ryan scored a victory with passage of the tax plan (Associated Press)
House Speaker Paul Ryan scored a victory with passage of the tax plan (Associated Press)
Published Dec. 19, 2017
Updated Dec. 20, 2017

WASHINGTON – The House this afternoon approved the $1.5 trillion tax bill by a mostly party-line vote of 227-203.

There were no Florida members among the 12 Republicans who joined Democrats in opposition.

The legislation is now on to the Senate, where Florida Republican Marco Rubio is a yes, while Democratic Bill Nelson is a no.


Rep. Dan Webster, R-Clermont:

"Today, I voted to end the era of Washington's broken tax code punishing taxpayer. This bill allows Americans to keep more money in their pockets, ends lobbyist loopholes and special-interest exemptions, and makes everyone play by the same rules."

Rep. Neal Dunn, R-Panama City

"Today, we made history. We just voted to cut the taxes of hardworking Americans across this country – an early Christmas gift for our nation. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act lowers individual rates, doubles the child tax credit, and delivers much needed tax relief to Main Street job creators. This means bigger paychecks, more jobs, and a stronger economy."

Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fort Walton Beach

"Our outdated tax code has thrown a wet blanket over America's economic growth for decades, and an overhaul was long overdue. American families needed tax relief, and I am proud to have helped deliver it. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act lowers taxes for American families and businesses, and streamlines our burdensome, complicated, and outdated tax code. Making taxes lower, fairer, and simpler for all Americans has been a priority of Congress for years, and today, the House took a major step toward achieving this goal."

Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Boca Raton:

"Congressional Republicans have turned their backs on the American people, who overwhelmingly oppose this devastating scam. This bill sends a clear message to their constituents that they would rather bend the system in favor of lobbyists, donors, and corporate executives than strengthen seniors and middle-class families. Despite their promises, there's no great tax simplification or benefit for middle-class Americans."

Rep. Lois Frankel, D-West Palm Beach:

"This tax scam is a big Christmas gift to billionaires and corporations, while everyone else gets a lump of coal! Hardworking middle-class families will have to foot the bill for tax breaks for the wealthiest one percent. The tax scam will throw millions off healthcare and explode our deficit by almost $1.5 trillion, meaning major cuts to Medicare and Medicaid. Americans deserve a better deal, one that invests in education, biomedical research, clean energy, and healthcare."

Rep. Charlie Crist, D-St. Petersburg

"The Republican-led Congress and White House missed a great opportunity to work in a bipartisan way to simplify the tax code and make it work better for the American people, particularly the middle class. Instead, we have a hyper-partisan product that writes the rigged economy into law – while creating major disruption in the healthcare marketplace, damaging our environment, and jacking up the national debt to new heights," said Crist. "Massive cuts for big corporations and the wealthiest will only further shrink our middle class and stack the cards against small businesses. Exploding the deficit saddles future generations, limiting their economic prospects. And slashing Medicare by $25 billion breaks a promise to our seniors."

Rep. Carlos Curbelo, R-Miami

"For years, lower- and middle-income Americans have been reading and hearing about the economic recovery without ever actually experiencing it. While some in our country have greatly benefited, others have been left behind. This is regrettably the case in South Florida. With today's passage of the Tax Cut and Jobs Act, we will be pushing economic opportunity deeper into our society and to every corner of our country. This legislation provides direct and immediate tax relief for individual Americans and American families by doubling the standard deduction and doubling the child tax credit to $2,000 per child with $1,400 being refundable for working families not earning enough to pay federal income taxes. In addition, all Americans will see lower rates. In the years immediately following passage of this bill, Americans earning between $20,000 and $30,000 will experience a 13.5 percent tax cut compared with an eight percent tax cut for the average American. The goal of tax reform was to help those who have been struggling to get by get ahead, this bill does that.

"On the business side, there is more good news. This legislation helps put an end to the exodus of American jobs and profits overseas. We're making our tax code more competitive and adopting anti-abuse provisions, to encourage companies from all over the world to move investments and operations to the United States, and we are preventing them from gaming the system to avoid paying their fair share. Additionally, we are taxing multinational corporations on over $2 trillion dollars in profits they have parked overseas. Those funds will now come home to the United States where they can be used to invest in workers, expand operations, and build new facilities.

"Like most pieces of legislation, this bill is not perfect. Like with any other broad, complex bill, there are provisions I would remove and others I would add. However, on the balance, this legislation will be good for our country. It will help all American workers, especially young people and immigrants who are seeking greater opportunities to grow and prosper. Most importantly, it gets us closer to fulfilling America's promise – that all who are willing to work hard and earn it can find their success in our country."

Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Miami

"The richest 1% of Floridians will enjoy a 40% tax cut, while the state's poorest 20% will get a mere 1% reduction. In addition, while the lower rate for working and middle-income taxpayers will expire in 2025 when they will begin paying a higher rate, corporate tax cuts will remain permanent.

"The GOP tax scam also is bad for Floridians' health. With a repeal of the tax penalty charged to people without health insurance, premiums will go up, while the number of insured goes down. Congress still hasn't reauthorized the Children's Health Insurance Program and if it is not refunded by the end of January, 340,000 children in our state may lose their health care."

Rep. Debbie Wasserman Shultz, D-Weston

"Today, the Republican-led Congress failed the American people by teaming up with special interests to prioritize the wish lists of Wall Street over the needs of middle class families. This abhorrent legislation was written by wealthy Republican donors, for wealthy Republican donors.

"While providing an enormous handout to giant corporations and the wealthiest 1 percent, this plan will ultimately raise taxes on millions of middle class Americans, increase premiums and the numbers who will be without health insurance, and adds $1.5 trillion to the deficit. As Republicans openly admit to using this legislation to pave the way for unconscionable cuts to Medicare and Medicaid, I will not back down in fighting their reckless agenda."

Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Miami

"It has been over 30 years since our country has seen significant tax reform. Today we will make history and change that. I am proud to stand with my colleagues in voting for a bill the will allow Americans to keep more of what they earn. The average middle class family of four will see a savings of more than $2,000, a substantial amount that will go a long way as many Floridians continue to rebuild and recover from hurricane season. Americans should be able to save more of their hard-earned tax dollars, and this legislation does just that. Tax reform will incentivize the economy, which will allow folks to keep their jobs, increase wages, and create more opportunities in the American job market."

Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Palm Coast:

"Even as the economy has experienced recent improvements, too many middle-income families are having difficulty making ends meet and this tax bill will provide much needed relief to them. By lowering tax rates, increasing the standard deduction and doubling the child credit, middle-income Florida families will see their federal income taxes reduced by a significant percentage. Moreover, the bill recognizes that America's business tax structure is antiquated and harms America's competitiveness. The reforms included in the bill — the dramatically lower tax rate, the full expensing of capital investments, and the move to a territorial tax system (paving the way for profits earned overseas to be brought back to the U.S.) — will better enable American companies to compete with foreign businesses and will help to stem the tide of companies and jobs going overseas. The conference report represents an improvement over both the House and Senate bills and I look forward to it being signed into law very soon."

Gov. Rick Scott:

"It is great news that Washington is following Florida's lead by cutting taxes for families. In Florida, we have cut taxes more than 80 times saving families over $7.5 billion, and today is an important step to return money back to Americans. It is also great news that the U.S. House of Representatives included Congressman Vern Buchanan's proposal for tax relief for Florida's citrus growers. Hurricane Irma decimated this iconic Florida industry and I have continued to advocate for months for funding to help Florida's citrus industry fully recover."