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President Donald Trump said Wednesday that a Republican tax reform plan is nearly done but reiterated it will come after an Affordable Care Act repeal measure.
"Before we do the tax — which is actually very well finalized — but we can't submit it until the health care statutorily or otherwise," Trump told reporters before a White House budget meeting. "So we're doing the health care — again moving along very well — sometime during the month of March, maybe mid-to-early March, we'll be submitting something that I think people will be very impressed by."
Trump has promised to release a tax plan soon, and White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Tuesday that it is expected in "the next couple weeks." Still, the Trump administration has not given much detail on how or if the proposal will change from the corporate and income tax-chopping plan Trump released on the campaign trail.
Congress and the White House still need to pin down exactly what shape tax reform will take. Congressional Republicans told CNBC that they do not expect Trump to put forth his own health or tax plans but rather endorse theirs.
A House Republican plan largely overlaps with Trump's, but contains some key differences, including a 20 percent corporate tax rate rather than 15 percent and a controversial border adjustment provision.
The prospect of corporate tax cuts and regulatory rollback have partly driven stock market optimism in recent months. But concerns have grown that tax changes will take longer than expected, partly driven by the complexities of health-care legislation.
Spicer repeated Wednesday that Republicans plan to address both policies in separate budget reconciliation processes, which only require a 51 votes and would allow the 52 GOP senators to pass the measures without Democrats. Congress will pursue at least partial ACA repeal in fiscal 2017 reconciliation, followed by tax reform later through fiscal 2018 reconciliation, Spicer said.
Congress cannot address both health care and tax reform in the same reconciliation. Spicer joked that the White House will have a "very busy" March and April, when he said it plans to present a budget, address health-care legislation and then move on to tax reform.