Senate Finance Extends Tax Breaks

Move on breaks runs counter to committee’s talk of simplifying the tax code.

Senate Finance Committee members this week supported seemingly contradictory goals by voting to extend narrow tax breaks as they touted an overhaul of the tax code that would imperil some of those same benefits.

A $205.1 billion proposal, approved yesterday by the panel on a 19-5 bipartisan vote, would provide benefits for corporate research, wind energy producers and financial-services companies doing business outside the U.S. It also would prevent the expansion of the alternative minimum tax for 2012 and 2013.

‘Dry Run’

Hatch said yesterday’s debate was a “dry run” for a tax overhaul. Other lawmakers called it a “beginning,” a “prelude,” the “prelims” and a “warm up.”

Congressional Recess

Turning the committee’s product into law won’t happen quickly. Congress is leaving for a recess that will last until Sept. 10.

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