NJ’s MacArthur throws down the gauntlet

From CNN:

Republican group threatens to block budget over tax deduction fight

Threatening the GOP’s top priority of passing major tax reform, Republican Rep. Tom MacArthur warned Tuesday night that so many House Republicans are frustrated with plans to nix a popular deduction, they could block the budget this week.

“I haven’t done a whip count, but yes, I think there’s enough,” the New Jersey congressman told reporters.

Meanwhile, Republican leaders, who can afford to lose only 22 members of their caucus, are scrambling to find a solution that would get enough Republicans on board to move forward with the budget, which is considered the first step in tax reform.

The Republican tax reform framework proposes eliminating the State and Local Tax deduction (SALT), a popular tax break that affects nearly one-third of filers, letting them deduct levies like state income taxes and property taxes. It’s been in place since the birth of the federal income tax in 1913.

About 30 GOP members represent districts that heavily rely on the deduction, and if they stick together they could derail the resolution.

Republicans from high-tax states like New York, New Jersey, California and Illinois have been negotiating behind the scenes with Republican leaders, hoping to either preserve the deduction or find some sort of compromise.

With just days before the House votes on a budget, MacArthur said he’s disappointed by what he described as a lack of progress in the negotiations.

The lawmaker from New Jersey, which has the highest property tax in the country, is taking issue with language added to the Senate budget that targets deductions like SALT in order to help raise money for tax cuts.

“If the deductibility of SALT is just wholesale gone, I don’t think it can pass the House,” he said.

This entry was posted in New Jersey Real Estate, Politics, Property Taxes. Bookmark the permalink.

70 Responses to NJ’s MacArthur throws down the gauntlet

  1. Grab them by the puzzy says:


    Here’s a scandal:
    Senate Republicans just voted to let Wall St. banks shut down class action lawsuits by customers they screwed over.

  2. grim says:

    Or is it all just a sham to keep up the appearance of…

  3. Juice Box says:

    Wait a sec. If all the Russian dossier stuff is just the Dems projecting…

    Was it then actually Bill Clinton ordering up golden showers from hookers while on his Russian trip to accept the 1/2 million dollar fee from a Russian bank?

  4. nwnj says:

    Don’t know much about this Flake character but it sounds like the phoniest resignation speech since McGreevy. Nowhere in the coverage do I see a mention that he wasn’t going to win the primary. More fake news.

  5. NO GOOD says:

    This is how tax reform should look:
    1) additional income over $500K – 20% tax. Zero deductions
    2) Sub $500K – no income tax. No credits.
    3) eliminate all corporate tax credits and exemptions and replace with 15% tax rate.
    4) bring in current money parked outside for a one-time 5% tax.
    5) additional personal income over $10M – 75% tax rate. No deductions.

  6. Blue Ribbon Teacher says:

    One thing I noticed this past week is that all kinds of people who are generally against tax cuts for businesses seem to think that we should be offering all kinds of tax incentives to entice Amazon to come here.

  7. Juice Box says:

    Look folks we have the best politicians money can buy.

    As Clot used to say “Remember that (insert taxpayer outrage here) when you’re watching your grandkids storm the ramparts when they decide they’re tired of paying for it.”

  8. Juice Box says:

    Clotpoll says:
    August 31, 2009 at 2:52 pm
    Please don’t spoil my fantasy of a citizen army breaking the ramparts and rushing the Fed building.

  9. Juice Box says:

    Antoher trip down memory lane.

    Clotpoll says:
    July 22, 2008 at 5:09 pm
    sas (267)-

    If even a handful of people had the kind of idea those of us here have about how bad things are getting, they’d be storming the ramparts right now.

    The general population has been systematically narcoticized and rendered zombies.

  10. Pumkinator Stepinator says:

    Grim, please release. A bit long but good. Copy & paste

  11. D-FENS says:

    His Democratic opponent is campaigning on MacArthur’s vote in favor of the tax reform bill…along with (perceived) anti-Trump sentiment in the district.


    grim says:
    October 25, 2017 at 7:32 am
    Or is it all just a sham to keep up the appearance of…

  12. No One says:

    I knew when Trump won the Repub nomination that he would wreck the Republican party. He’s a flightly, touchy, unprincipled diva who routinely contradicts himself and doesn’t see a problem with that. In addition he’s mean and vindictive toward people who disagree with him. Since he’s on both sides of most issues, that means everyone disagrees with him sometime, which makes everyone his personal enemy. He’s a big-time welfare-statist, and also a corporatist, with populist/nationalist rhetoric. Wall St clearly doesn’t believe his anti-NAFTA rhetoric anymore, btw, look at the stock of Kansas City Southern Railway back up, with about 30% of its traffic crossing the Mex/US border. I do think his tax plan will probably favor the poor&stupid most of all, which is after all his political base. Assuming the Repubs ever pass anything inspired by Trump.

  13. leftwing says:

    New home sales just exploded.

    Up 667k seasonally.

    Up c. 19% when down 0.9% was consensus.


  14. leftwing says:

    Re: MacArthur

    NJ has 12 Congressional Districts. Only five are Republican. Four of those are fairly tight R v D. Two of the four are in areas that likely won’t be badly impacted by SALT. The other two are Freylingheusen (11th) and MacArthur (3rd).

    If you really want to wonk out on the topic it is quite arguable that the measure generally used to assess competitiveness (CPVI) was corrupted by the 2016 Presidential election, one of two elections on which the index is based. Essentially, the distaste for Trump had more suburban R voting away from Trump. Therefore the R support in the districts is understated and these politicians are safer than generally thought. That was the basis of my comment yesterday that Rodney would be fine. Don’t know enough about the 3rd District to comment on MacArthur.

  15. leftwing says:

    Bottom line, is there a quorum after horse trading to get 30 House Reps to hang together to actually block. Or there will be some compromise beforehand.

  16. leftwing says:

    nwnj re: Flake not being competitive:

    CBS This Morning gave it the media equivalent of an asterisked footnote. Then qualified it by calling him libertarian and ‘conservative, at least fiscally’ at every turn.

    He had a 30% favorable rating in his state. Uncontested assessment was he was going to lose the primary, and very likely the general.

    Easy to play the role of hero when you know you are going to be shot anyway. Coward.

  17. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    Meh…the news I had on in the background yesterday pointed out that he was not favored to win reelection. Channel 4. 4pm news. He wasn’t a terribly strong speaker.

  18. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    Here’s a question for NJ Dems. What qualifies Murphy to be governor of NJ. Seriously, he has zero political experience. As I’ve pointed out numerous times here, he was nearly thrown out as the appointed ambassador to Germany after he sophmorically made negative remarks about Merkel in an email that was leaked. He’s all ours NJ. Read my lips, he will be the worst leader NJ has ever had. I ask myself, if you have more money than god, why the hell do you want to be a politician? Because having a lot of money makes you think you are superior to everyone else. It’s sad really. NJ will pay the price. On the bright side, if you are a government worker, you should be dancing on the rooftops.

  19. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    The 8:24 at Bloomfield had not shown up at 9:10 this morning. This is why I can’t rely on mass commuting to go to work.

  20. leftwing says:

    Stu, what makes you think NJ even cares?

    As one massive suburb it has that ‘too fat house cat’ mentality. As long as there are enough shiny little accoutrements to make them feel special life is good.

    The Governor’s mansion has been occupied by likely the most incompetent list of incumbents anywhere, the state is effectively bankrupt, infrastructure is crumbling but, dude, I have a (leased) 5 series beemer and a groomed lawn in (one of a hundred) blue ribbon towns. Life is good.

    Suburban life was foreign to me until 1996. I’ve never become accustomed to it nor do I understand it. NJ suburbs, less so.

  21. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:
  22. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    Just trying to prove how sh1tty it is to live here.

    I take mass transit nearly everywhere I go, because I am cheap. I stay in hotels usually 45 minutes outside of the city I am visiting as it easily saves $200-$300 per day. Ask ExPat or Nom who I hung out with in Boston. Family stayed for $100 a night in a great hotel with pool, free parking, great breakfast and located at the start of an express bus into the city.

    I take the rail in Chicago, in London (out to Crystal Palace) or to Kent, in Paris even in Los Angeles (which is insane). I even took some rail in India against the urging of my fellow workers. Nothing is as bad as NJ Transit commuter rail.

  23. exjersey says:

    Suburban life is quiet. I find it a little tooo quiet.

  24. 3b says:

    Stu NJ used to be a great little state in my opinion. Not any more. Nothing works everything broken. We have been discussing where we would go when we retire and have no idea. We Could buy the place we are in at what would be considered a great price. But we are not enthusiastic about it. Go back to New York? A lot depends where our kids end up and it looks like they will be in this area and Philly. We just don’t know where we want to be.

  25. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    If I were to stay in the country, I would probably retire to Nevada. The weather is great, the real estate is cheap, the traffic’s not so bad and gambling provides tons of Captain Cheapo opportunities. It’s a $100 one-hour round-trip flight to San Fran, San Diego or Los Angeles. Mexico is a short-car ride if you want a cheap vacation. And now Vegas has pro sports.

  26. Yo! says:

    Christie on Bloomberg TV begging for a private sector job.

  27. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    Christie will do just fine.

  28. D-FENS says:

    I sense your comment from yesterday is mostly correct leftwing.

  29. Blue Ribbon Teacher says:


    I’m planning a trip to Boston for next year, what hotel was it?

  30. leftwing says:

    Good buddy of mine has been out to Vegas a few times looking at properties. Just got back again from another trip actually, rented a house to see how he liked it. Self employed, kids will be out in five years. Attractive to him for all the reasons you stated.

    How’s Philly proper doing? Seems real estate has popped there a bit. Are there any more activities? Seem to remember it as a very small big city a couple decades ago. Haven’t done anything more than a quick in/out for business since then, no real time there.

  31. D-FENS says:

    I would also say that areas in NJ like NW, West, and South Jersey are similar to the upstate NY districts you described yesterday.

    NE NJ stands to be hurt the most by SALT elimination….and their representatives would not vote for the bill in any form anyway.

  32. D-FENS says:

    Selfie with Pence? I just can’t see MacArthur sabotaging the bill.


  33. D-FENS says:

    MacArthur was one of the architects of the compromise within the obamacare repeal bill that went on to pass in the House. He may come out of this with some sort of similar compromise.

  34. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    Hyatt House Boston Burl1ngt0n. We booked through a Pricel1ne Express deal. Use b1ddingfortravel to make sure it’s the right hotel.

  35. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    Left…Philly is rapidly gentrifying. If you are willing to live in slightly sketchy areas, there are still deals to be had. Downtown or near Penn? Forget about it. You are too late. I kid you not, it’s spreading to Jersey too. My brother’s law firm was offered a huge amount for their office (gorgeous Brownstown) in get this, Camden. It’s on the main road through the University area. I’ve really fallen for Philly too. Besides the amazing hospital complex down there which puts Sloan to Shame. The city appears to be much better run. Road construction on 95 is nearing completion as is 676. The airport is great (and cheap) and it’s a heck of a beer/gastropub city. Their sports teams suck though.

  36. JCer says:

    Steam worse than the teams, are the fans……

  37. joyce says:

    D-FENS / Leftwing,
    With elimintion of AMT and reduction in pass through rates, couldn’t it benefit Rodney’s district more than not?

  38. Blue Ribbon Teacher says:

    The Philly Italian market is losing it’s soul with the gentrification. Hipsters multiply faster than rabbits.

  39. No One says:

    The commentary today is so much nicer given the absence of the deluded one.

    Speaking of Nevada, here’s a 75 million dollar house on Lake Tahoe with 8 bedrooms and what it calls a “magical garden”. Their property tax is only $5,000/yr higher than mine. Steam, if you win the lottery three times in a row and buy that house, make sure to invite me out.

  40. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    The tram is a nice touch. Who needs a house in Tahoe when I can stay there for free with free lift tickets and housekeeping.


    I adore Tahoe, but weather can be a bit rough for old-timers. Emerald Bay is one of the most beautiful spots in America.

  41. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    Plus, I’ve played a total of $3 on the lottery, against my will.

  42. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    LOL. Urban life was foreign to me until 1996.

    Now I’m back in a suburban SFH (well, a suburban corner of Boston) after 15 years in the same 900 square feet, I think I can say I get them both. In fact, I’m not sure I could go back to “real” NJ-type suburbs with nothing walkable and no access to mass transit.

    Suburban life was foreign to me until 1996. I’ve never become accustomed to it nor do I understand it. NJ suburbs, less so.

  43. leftwing says:

    Joyce, it might.

    IIRC, the pass through change specifically excluded professionals like doctors. I guess no one knows until this thing finally comes out of the House and then the fun begins…

    Just watched Trump interview leaving I think Bedminster on Marine One. CNBC reporting that he walked back the 401k protections from his tweet earlier. I did not hear that….certainly did not say that directly, seemed to be more of a response acknowledging he doesn’t author the bill.

    Have to imagine there will be some significant limitations to any pass through, whether size, longevity, etc. Otherwise it’s just a massive loophole to rearrange personal affairs. All speculation I suppose until the papers come out.

  44. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    Unless you call Bloomfield or Nutley urban, I guess it kind of is. In that case I guess I started to get “urbanized” in 1991.

  45. leftwing says:

    Ex, that’s funny.

    My disorientation with the suburbs is that I always understood them to be (and was told they were) these little enclaves of community. My ex- recounting how her street was an integral neighborhood, kids all playing street hockey together, moving nets out of the way when cars came….

    The reality is that there are 20 nets in 20 different driveways with the kids going to 10 different teams pants on fire at different times.

    Is there a general sense of community, yes, but more around the school and specific friends in sports/extracurriculars we drive to.

    I guess that if social life was to be mostly around activities I was driving to rather than specifically with neighbors I lived next to I likely would have chosen real estate more appealing than a high density, small lot suburb. I maintain many friendships in and out of town, but none would be damaged or enhanced based on whether I lived specifically in this town or not.

    No animosity towards suburbs generally (or NJ suburbs in particular), just an observation and analysis from my POV. Maybe neighborhoods were once the center of attention and now social interaction has changed as kids and adults have become more heavily scheduled around specific activities and specific interests regardless of location. Don’t know.

  46. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    “kids all playing street hockey together, moving nets out of the way when cars came”

    Brings back memories. Kids don’t actually play sports outside of organized league sports. All free time is spent in front of the Xb0x or PlayStati0n. That is, if your community has bought into the homework is bad phenomenon.

  47. grim says:

    Sports aren’t the problem, the organization is.

    I wouldn’t trade one game of parking lot stickball for the shit they call sports today.

    Parents that buy into it are largely deluded.

  48. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    Proud to have never purchased a private lesson for anything or for anyone. Talk about a serious rip-off. Except perhaps when going from intermediate to expert in downhill skiing. That was a tough hump to get over. Though I did it through group lessons.

  49. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    lw – What your ex described was exactly how it was in most NJ suburbs – until the mid-to-late 70’s and then it all changed. Inflation chased wives into the workplace and that’s when that world went away. In the late 60’s, early 70’s it was a different world. Every wife was home all day and all of the kids of the neighborhood just sorted out their own activities in the streets, driveways, and yards. There was almost always a kickball or baseball game going on in the street and if for some reason the streets and front yards were all empty that could mean only one thing: An all-neighborhood, all-age dodge ball game was going on in someone’s fenced in backyard.

    Summer activities were 1 of 2 choices:
    1. You got picked up by a yellow school bus with about half the kids and were taken to YMCA day camp.
    2. You made your own fun out in the street, yards, and woods just like the rest of the year.

    YMCA camp was broken into 4 two week cycles, so some kids might only go 2, 4, or 6 weeks to Y camp, go on vacation some other week, and play in the streets and yards the rest of the time.

    Also, there was no expectation that any wife would need to go anywhere by car during a weekday. I would say the houses divided about equally between 1-car and 2-car families. I would say only 3% of any school was picked up or dropped off by parents on any particular day.

    Another thing was that back then no parents ever cared or knew where their kids were all day and after school. It would only cross their minds if it got dark or dinner time and all their kids weren’t home yet.

    Maybe neighborhoods were once the center of attention and now social interaction has changed as kids and adults have become more heavily scheduled around specific activities and specific interests regardless of location. Don’t know.

  50. leftwing says:

    Good memories from all. Changes are signs of the times I guess.

  51. grim says:

    Port Authority to Wayne Transit Center

    2:40 to 3:10

    30 minutes from NYC to Home. Made it into NYC in about 40 this morning.

    Easier than midtown direct. Got no complaints … today.

  52. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    The buses are fine until there is a problem in the tunnel. I have some super important stuff I MUST be on-time for tomorrow. I also have a terrible cold which sucks. I will report back on my Grove-Street commute tomorrow morning. :P

  53. STEAMturd questioning the gender of Hillary's Cankle fluid. says:

    Grim…what time did you go in this morning and what are the costs? Leaving the city before 3pm is always a thing of beauty. The only slowdown tends to be from the arrogant and self-entitled pricks, who think it’s okay to cut onto 21 north or south from route 3 west at the last second. They really need to put up plastic pylons there.

  54. abeiz says:

    re: testing for valid pass through entities

    I have toyed with the idea of going off W-2 and being 1099. How does one test for validity based on longevity or amount without imposing exclusions in perpetuity?

    I suppose you can make people wait a year or two, but then everyone would “migrate” anyway, albeit later.

    Steam, I bet your calamari puckers on a blue square.

  55. leftwing says:

    I don’t think anyone knows what the code will be until it comes out and gets passed.

    I presume, unfounded, that there would be some qualifications otherwise everyone would do an obvious workaround. Since they spoke at one time about excluding professionals and seem to frame the change in the context of giant companies receiving a lower tax rate than small businesses my guess is you would have to be a a bona fide small business. Your guess is as good as mine as to what that means…requirements on industry, number of employees, payroll or revenue size, etc, etc.

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  57. Reality bit3sBigTime says:

    All you have to know about the Tax Overhaul is the following headlines.
    “Gary Cohn set to leave White House after tax Act”.

    He was there for one thing. To make sure the Vampire Squid and the others in the neighborhood get “their” thing.

  58. No One says:

    Maybe the passthrough will be the wink-wink, where Republicans will pass a special increase in the tax rate for millionaires, but give them a back door around it via the partnership rate.
    I doubt it though.
    Sounds like my taxes could go up Federal and State.
    Which is why I voted Libertarian.

  59. chicagofinance says:

    My high school courtyard was all blacktop; this photo was obviously relatively recent….

    We spray painted a black strike zone on the right hand ball court…..

  60. chicagofinance says:

    doesnt accept photo

  61. exjersey says:

    2:20 we spent 20 years in NJ and when we first got there we rented for a couple of years in Montville. It was just a bit too removed from the City as the Boonton Line clipped along at an hour and a half door to door. I much preferred Essex Co. which just felt older and more grown in. when we made the move from Morris to Essex some were suprised.

  62. Blue Ribbon Teacher says:

    We used to play stickball at the local elementary school. The strike zone was a sign on the wall that read “No ball playing”

  63. abeiz says:

    Amazon rolls out in-home delivery…

    “As a Prime member, get your Amazon packages securely delivered just inside your front door. Plus, grant access to the people you trust, like your family, friends, dog walker, or house cleaner – no more leaving a key under the mat.”

    so now you need a smart lock, and an amazon cloud cam, which turns on to tape the “delivery”…sheesh, where will Bezos stop?

  64. ex-Jersey says:

    8:50 creepy as hell, amirite?

  65. grim says:

    How about a pool for when the first delivery guy gets shot?

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