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The Morning Briefing: Tax Reform Moves to Senate, Harassment Accusations Mount and Much, Much Moore

Good Friday morning.

Here is what's on the President's agenda today:

  • In the morning, President Donald J. Trump will receive his daily intelligence briefing.
  • Later in the morning, the President will host NCAA National Championship teams from around the country.
  • In the afternoon, the President will have lunch with Vice President Mike Pence.
  • Later in the afternoon, the President will meet with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

Tax reform passes the House, Finance Committee approves Senate GOP tax plan

Yesterday the House of Representatives passed a tax reform bill. "We are in a generational defining moment for our country," said House Speaker Paul Ryan. Republicans celebrated. Democrats not so much.

"Republicans want you to believe that their trickle-down tax break for the rich will pay for itself," said House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. "Never has happened," she said. Democrats say the tax plan will benefit rich people, but they always say that.

Over in the Senate, a tax reform bill passed through the Finance Committee late yesterday. The plan is to bring it to the floor for a vote after Thanksgiving.

"For the millions of hard-working Americans who need more money in their pockets and the chance of a better future, help is on the way," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said in a statement.

“When the Senate returns after Thanksgiving, I will bring this must-pass legislation to the floor for further debate and open consideration," he said.

The bill "would temporarily cut taxes for individuals while permanently slashing the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 20 percent. It also would repeal ObamaCare’s individual mandate."

As usual, not everyone was happy. "I think this is indefensible, partisan legislation," said Ron Wyden (Ore.), the top Democrat on the Finance Committee.

Alleged predator update

Yesterday was a big day on the sexual predator beat. We'll go through the developments one by one.

Moore: A new poll from Fox News shows Moore is losing support. The survey revealed that 50 percent of likely voters said they would support Democrat Doug Jones, while 42 percent said they would support the accused Judge Roy Moore. Moore held a press conference yesterday and said calls for him to drop out of the race were "an effort by Mitch McConnell and his cronies to steal this election from the people of Alabama." Regarding the allegations made against him, he said, "They're not only untrue, but they have no evidence to support them." The Alabama Republican Party is standing by Moore. "The ALGOP Steering Committee supports Judge Roy Moore as our nominee and trusts the voters as they make the ultimate decision in this crucial race," the party said in a statement. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, WH press secretary, was asked about a zillion times at the presser yesterday if President Trump would weigh in on the subject or call for Moore to step down. She responded by saying the president's position is that the issue is one for the voters in Alabama and that Moore should step down if the accusations are true. Meanwhile, the attorney for one of Moore's accusers, Gloria Allred, refused to say if the purported signature of Moore in her client's yearbook was authentic or a forgery. A group calling themselves Women for Moore will hold a rally tomorrow to support the candidate.