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Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa

Representing the 1st District of Hawaii

Representative Colleen Hanabusa Introduces and Cosponsors Amendments to House GOP Tax Plan

November 14, 2017
Press Release

Washington, DC – This week, House Republicans are finalizing their GOP tax plan for an expected floor vote on Thursday.  

"Unfortunately, the plan repeals tax deductions for those who need and deserve tax relief in favor of the wealthy and corporations," said Rep. Hanabusa.  "Equally disturbing, the GOP tax plan also makes it financially lucrative for corporations to ship American jobs overseas."  

“In one final push to make good of bad tax policies, I am introducing and cosponsoring amendments to restore federal deductions that will help Hawaii residents," said Rep. Hanabusa.  "Working with my House Democratic colleagues, we are seeking to restore the following:

  • Mortgage Interest Deductions [introduced by Rep. Hanabusa];
  • Private Activity Bonds and Increase state allocations for Low-Income Housing Credit;
  • State and Local Tax Deductions;
  • Medical Expense Deductions; and 
  • Student Loan Interest Deductions."

As an example of how the House GOP tax plan impacts those most vulnerable, under current law, if a tax payer's qualified medical expenses exceed 10 percent of their income, those expenses can be taken as an itemized deduction.  In 2015, the medical expense deduction was used by 9 million Americans to claim $87 billion dollars in tax relief.  A severe illness, a premature child, a family member with Alzheimer's disease . . . these are they type of situations where the medical expense tax deduction makes a huge difference.  It is also an important deduction for older Americans, with over 73 percent of claimants over 50 years old and 55 percent of claimants over 65 years old.  In addition, half of those claiming the medical expense deduction have incomes below $50,000.00.  "When you look at the taxpayers who claim the medical expense deduction, it's impossible to understand how House Republicans can target the elderly and sick in favor of the wealthy," said Rep. Hanabusa, "but that is exactly what they are doing."

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) forecasts the GOP tax plan will increase the deficit and the debt by $1.7 trillion over the next decade. "What the Republicans are doing is creating a gigantic hole that will be used next year to cut benefits like Medicare and Social Security," said Rep. Hanabusa.  "And to make matters worse, House Republicans tonight filed an amendment repealing the individual health insurance mandate," said Rep. Hanabusa.  "There is no aloha in this GOP tax plan."