Tax overhaul effort lacks advantages Reagan enjoyed in 1986
WASHINGTON - The fundamentals of tax overhaul were strong some 30 years ago.
A popular president, Republican Ronald Reagan, pushed the landmark 1986 measure. Powerful and experienced congressional leaders shepherded the legislation with bipartisan support. Key players had established, trusting relationships.
The situation facing President Donald Trump features none of those advantages. His party is divided and his congressional leadership is weakened after the health care debacle. Key players are inexperienced. Trump has record low approval ratings. Republicans who control all of Washington are planning on going it alone, without help from Democrats.
Now, there isn't even basic agreement on what revising the tax code is. And the White House says it wants to devise a plan while Capitol Hill Republicans would prefer to take the lead.