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Politics

Paul Ryan again pushes for a simpler tax code

House Speaker Paul Ryan touted Republicans' tax reform plan Wednesday after touring an Intel facility in Oregon.

Ryan cast the coming GOP proposal as essential to simplifying the tax code and allowing the U.S. economy and its companies to thrive.

"We're basically taxing American businesses out of America," Ryan told Intel employees.

Ryan, long a proponent of overhauling the American tax system, hopes to approve a bill before the end of the year. Republicans want to start working a plan through Congress when they return from recess next month.

However, lawmakers must jump a set of hurdles to reach that goal. They face deadlines soon to pass politically contentious legislation on raising the debt ceiling and funding the government.

In a press briefing later Wednesday, Ryan said he doesn't think a government shutdown is necessary and said that most people don't want that to happen. Ryan said, however, that Congress will need more time to complete the appropriations process, especially in the Senate.

The House speaker's comments come after President Donald Trump said Tuesday evening that he would be willing to shut down the government to get the necessary funding for the border wall. On Wednesday, Ryan said he and the president "completely agree" on the need for a border wall.

Republicans also have to navigate a complex set of regional and corporate interests and tradeoffs to win the majority vote needed to pass a tax bill under budget reconciliation. The margin for error in the Senate is particularly thin — the GOP can only lose two votes and still pass a bill.

However, Ryan said he feels "very confident" about approving a tax plan.

One thing Ryan will have to figure out is how to raise enough revenue to lower individual and corporate rates as much as he wants. Top Republican tax writers have said they will not include the border adjustment provision backed by Ryan and House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady, R-Tex.

In a separate appearance Wednesday with AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson, Brady said that Republicans had a "unique moment" to pass tax reform.

He also expressed confidence that the GOP could approve a plan by the end of the year.

WATCH: Market jumps on tax reform, drops on shutdown talk

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