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House Speaker Paul Ryan said Tuesday he anticipates that the deeply unpopular Republican tax bill will win public approval only after its "results" become apparent.
Speaking to reporters in the Capitol, Ryan blamed public opposition to the GOP's Tax Cuts and Jobs Act on television pundits who Ryan said are mischaracterizing the Republican legislation.
"If people are out there on TV telling mistruths, disguising the facts of this thing, that's going to make it unpopular," Ryan said. "When you have a slingfest — a mudfest — on TV when pundits are slamming each other about this tax bill before it passes, that's what's going to happen," the Wisconsin Republican said.
"But when we get this done, when people see their withholding improving, when they see the jobs occurring, when they see a simpler tax code, that's what's going to produce the results," Ryan said. "And results are going to be what makes this popular."
Under the Republican plan, "the typical family of four making the typical family income of $73,000 will get a tax cut of $2,059," he said. "This is going to make such a positive difference in the lives of everyday working Americans, from all walks of life."
Still, the Republicans' message has so far failed to resonate with the public — hampered by nonpartisan reports showing that the GOP bill will benefit the wealthy, including President Donald Trump, far more than it will benefit every day, working Americans.
According to a Monmouth poll released Monday, half of all Americans believe that their taxes will go up if the GOP plan becomes law. The same poll showed that only 14 percent of people think they will actually get a tax cut under the bill.
A CNN poll released ahead of Tuesday's expected House vote found that opposition to the measure outnumbers support for it by a whopping 22 percent. That poll found that 55 percent of respondents opposed the GOP's tax overhaul while just 33 percent said they supported it.
One clue as to why the tax bill is so unpopular can be found in what people actually think the law will do: According to CNN, 2 in 3 people think the tax bill will benefit the wealthy more than it does the middle class. Just 27 percent believe that middle-class taxpayers will be the big winners under the GOP bill.