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Democratic congressman: Tax reform is good, but we're not going to support only tax cuts

  • Republicans may hope to get some Democrats to vote for their tax legislation, but don't expect that to happen if it winds up just being tax cuts, said Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J.
  • He believes what's needed is comprehensive tax reform.

Republican leaders may hope to get some Democrats to vote for their tax legislation, but don't expect that to happen if it winds up just being tax cuts, Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J., told CNBC on Thursday.

"We are not going to support simply tax cuts. We've been through that game before, and we're not going to do it again," he said in an interview with "Closing Bell."

"We want the middle class to really feel that the government is on their side. And in order to do that, you need comprehensive reform."

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., told CNBC on Thursday that he believes he can get some lawmakers from across the aisle to support the tax reform legislation, which he said will get passed this year.

However, Republicans have yet to agree on a plan. And adding to the tension within the party is President Donald Trump, who has been publicly shaming GOP leaders for the lack of action.

Meanwhile, Wall Street is beginning to think true reform is pretty much dead and instead sees tax cuts as more likely.

Rep. Charlie Dent, R-Pa., said Republicans would ideally like comprehensive tax reform but acknowledged that one of the options may wind up being tax cuts.

"My preference and I think all of our preference, Republican and Democrat alike, is to get to real reform that would be as close to fully paid for as possible. That's easier said than done," he said.

— CNBC's Jeff Cox contributed to this report.