Some of these tax breaks have been renewed regularly for over 30 years. After some wrangling in the House, the Ways and Means Committee voted to make six expired tax breaks permanent April 29, according to Market Watch. This move would add $310 billion to the deficit over the next 10 years if approved by the Senate, though analysts explained that this is unlikely to happen before the November elections.
In an interesting role-reversal, Democrats are arguing that this move is fiscally irresponsible, as it is not offset by spending cuts or tax increases, Bloomberg explained. The left also feels that it is unfair that businesses be given tax benefits that aren't offset when Republicans have maintained that extending unemployment benefits must be covered.
"To say that Republican action today is hypocritical is a serious understatement," said Representative Sander Levin of Michigan, the top Democrat on the Ways and Means Committee, according to the news source.
Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Cam, R-Mich., explained that they started with bills that have had bipartisan sponsors in the past, but he hopes to consider other expired provisions later this year, according to Bloomberg. He declined to say which he wants to make permanent, but the largest are those for bonus depreciation for capital expenses and the right to deduct state sales taxes. Camp plans to retire from Congress when his term ends.
Among the bills that the panel voted to make permanent were the research credit, a rule that allows small businesses to write off capital expenses, the active financing exception, and the look-through rule, the news source reported.