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The Senate passes tax reform bill



Senators voted early Saturday morning to pass a nearly $1.5 trillion tax bill that would mark the largest change to the U.S. tax code in 30 years.

The 51-49 vote to pass the "Tax Cuts and Jobs Act" was mostly along with party lines with Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee the only Republican to vote against the bill, saying he was concerned about the growing deficit.

The vote came after Republicans leaders spent hours negotiating with three key GOP holdouts to bring them on board.

The bill lowers the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 20 percent starting in 2019. It keeps seven tax brackets, unlike the House bill which slashes the brackets down to just four, but the Senate bill lowers the income tax rate for most bracket and it increases the income threshold to qualify for the highest bracket.

It's estimated that 62 percent of Americans will end up getting a tax cut, but because the bill repeals several popular tax credits some people could see their taxes increase.

Individual income tax cuts will only be effective until 2026 under the Senate bill.

One of the biggest criticisms of the Senate bill is that it repeals the Affordable Care Act's individual health care mandate, which required Americans without health insurance to pay a tax penalty.

The Joint Committee on Taxation, a nonpartisan group estimates the bill would add $1 trillion to the U.S. national debt.

It's not over yet. Now the House and Senate will meet to hash out the differences between the two bills before sending a final version to President Trump.

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