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New York Republicans fail to secure SALT deductions 

SALT deductions are a key issue in the Feb. 13 special election in New York’s third congressional district.

By Jesse Valentine - February 12, 2024
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Capitol Building
The U.S. Capitol building is seen in Washington, D.C., Nov. 15, 2023. (Francis Chung/POLITICO via AP Images)

House Republicans from New York state voted in support of a tax bill that they initially protested for omitting their push to boost the state and local tax deduction (SALT).

The SALT deduction allows taxpayers to deduct certain state and local taxes on their federal income tax returns. These taxes can include property taxes, state income taxes, and local sales taxes. SALT deductions were capped when former President Donald Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 into law. As a result, residents in New York state and elsewhere faced a higher tax burden.

Lawmakers introduced the Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act on Jan. 17. The bill expands the child tax credit while also restoring tax benefits for certain businesses and banks. It did not include any changes to the SALT deduction. On Jan. 30, Republican New York Reps. Anthony D’Esposito, Andrew Garbarino, Nick LaLota and Mike Lawler protested the bill by joining with Democrats to block a procedural rule that temporarily stopped congress from functioning.

“For all of us in these districts, you know, that delivered the majority, this is the issue that matters, and we’re gonna keep fighting to get it done,” Lawler told The Hill.

The Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act passed the next day with no SALT changes. Lawler and Garbarino voted in favor of the bill.

Lawler proposed a separate bill with narrow changes to the SALT deduction. On Wednesday, House Republicans put that bill on ice.

The fight over SALT deductions has become a central issue in the upcoming special election to fill the vacancy left by former Rep. George Santos (R-NY). The Democratic candidate, Tom Suozzi, served in the House of Representatives from 2017 to 2023. In that time, Suozzi helped pass three separate SALT deductions. 

In a Feb. 8 debate, Suozzi explained how his experience will help him secure SALT deductions in the future.

“I passed it through the House three times despite enormous opposition,” Suozzi said. “If I go back to congress I’ll be a senior member of congress. I’ll get my seniority back. I’ll go back on Ways and Means. I’ll get the Senate to do it as well because I know how to do it. I know how to build those relationships.”

The special election ends Feb. 13, 2024.


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