On Wednesday, the Senate waived a budget point of order against, and thus effectively passed on an 81-17 vote, an amendment (S. Amdt. 9) to the Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization act (S. 223) that would repeal the 1099 reporting requirements added by the health care reform law (P.L. 111-148) that mandates reporting of payments totaling $600 or more in a year to a single vendor.
This provision was put in the bill as a revenue raiser, because third-party reporting prevents "under the table" payments and non-inclusion of income on tax returns. So the Republicans and Democrats in the Senate (this version of the amendment was introduced by Michigan's own Debbie Stabenow) have proven yet again that they are not serious about getting rid of the deficit in ways that can be done without causing real economic havoc to ordinary people who are just scraping by. Instead, they kowtow to the National Association of Manufacturers and all of the other lobbying groups representing businesses that are willing to let tax cheats continue to hide away their income and leave the greater share of the tax burden to those who comply with their obligations.
Carl Levin at least recognizes that repeal of this reporting provision will mean less of the taxes due coming into the Treasury. He proposed an amendment (S. Amdt. 28) that would have paid for the repeal with other revenue raisers--including the repeal of the ridiculous "domestic manufacturing" deduction under section 199 for oil and gas production and changes to the foreign tax credit applicable to dual capacity taxpayers. You'd think the Senate would have been eager to pass a revenue-neutral version of the bill, wouldn't you, after all the hollering about how the government "must" reduce Social Security and other "entitlements" because there simply isn't enough money? But the Senate voted against the paid-for repeal, 44-54.
I'm more and more convinced that it is not the deficit that the Republicans hollering for "entitlement reform" care about--it is that they just simply want to destroy all of the things that the New Deal did to provide a safety net for ordinary people, while making sure that they reinstate brute-force capitalism like existed in the 1920s, back when Teddy Roosevelt made his famous statement about the corporate titans and malefactors of great wealth.
At least the Senate voted down Mitch McConnell's attempt to repeal the health care overhaul, which he also offered as an amendment to the FAA reauthorization bill. The defeat came on a vote of 47-51 on a point of order, since repeal would cost us more than $1 trillion in the decade after 2019.