MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A day after the House passed its version of tax reform, members of Congress were back home urging the public to get involved in the fight as it heads to the Senate.
As CBS2’s Carolyn Gusoff explained, the plan eliminates the ability to deduct state and local taxes.
“If this tax bill is to pass it will be horrendous for us,” Democratic Congressman, Tom Suozzi said.
“It’s going to be less spending money available, it’s going to be harder to compete, there are going to be more people moving away,” Republican Peter King added.
Dire predictions came from both sides of the aisle, as Suozzi and King said the tax reform bill touted by Republicans as a nationwide cut will be a hike for many at home as it slashes state and local tax deductions — known as SALT.
“It’s going to be very tough to get SALT reinstated. This has been a rough week for New York and Long Island,” King said.
“We need New Yorkers to talk to anyone they know. They need to talk to Republicans, people who know the president to tell them this is bad for New York. It’s bad for Long Island, it’s bad for New York City,” Suozzi added.
King and Suozzi addressed the Long Island Association in a show of bipartisan unity.
“We’re in bad shape right now, as far as the state and local tax deduction elimination by the Republican tax reform bill,” said Suozzi. “We have to keep on fighting. If I go down, I’m going down kicking and screaming.”
“I didn’t want to be giving people false hope. We’re going to fight as hard as we can, but the reality is the Senate bill is more damaging than the House bill,” King said. “Having said that, we are going to keep the pressure one.”
“It’s not over until it’s over. I think our best chance is to convince President Trump that this is really bad,” association president Kevin Law added,
King was one of only thirteen Republicans in the nation to vote ‘no’ and warned that tax reform was being rushed through with unforseen consequences.
“You are in effect rewriting tax law and health law in one month without any hearings,” he said.
He was not optimistic as what he calls an even more damaging bill heads to the Senate.
Neither are taxpayers.
“The people who passed the bill, it doesn’t concern them because this doesn’t touch them in their wallet so they don’t really care,” one man said.
“We all voted for Donald Trump and we all wish him well, we think he’s doing a great job with other things, but we didn’t expect anything like this to happen,” a woman added.
Both King and Suozzi said they support the concept of tax reform — reducing the corporate tax rate and simplifying the tax code, but that this reform is not the answer.
“We are going to try and work through the president, but he’s, again, he’s focused more on the job aspect of it nationwide,” King said. “I just think he’s getting bad advice from Mnuchin and Cohn.”
They warned the impact could last for decades.
King blamed what he called bias in Congress against New York. Suozzi said the rest of the country has no understanding of our cost of living.