FILE - Donald Trump
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President Donald Trump on Wednesday hailed the historic tax reform package that’s about to become law as a huge win for taxpayers that will boost the economy and spur job growth across the U.S.

At a White House cabinet meeting shortly before a House revote on the reform legislation, Trump also said it “essentially” repeals Obamacare.

“When the individual mandate is being repealed, that means ObamaCare is being repealed,” Trump said. “We have essentially repealed ObamaCare and we will come up with something much better.”

The repeal of the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate, which requires all Americans to purchase health care coverage, is included in the $1.5 trillion federal tax reform package approved this week by Congress with no Democratic support.

The GOP plan replaces current tax brackets with seven new ones, most of them lower. The corporate tax rate will be reduced from 35 percent to 21 percent, a cut Republicans have said is vital for the U.S. to become more competitive with other countries and which will lead to job and wage growth. The standard deduction taken by a majority of families would be nearly doubled, to $24,000 for a married couple. The reduction for state and local taxes (SALT) will be capped at $10,000. The child tax credit will be increased to $2,000 from $1,000.

Democrats claim the legislation is nothing more than a massive tax break for corporations and wealthy Americans and will add $1.5 trillion to the country’s debt over the next decade.

Trump is expected to sign the measure this week after it cleared its final legislative hurdle Wednesday in the House.

Republican Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner said it has “good elements and bad elements” to it.

“I personally wish it did more for the middle class, middle income earners,” Rauner said Wednesday. “I don’t think it does quite enough. … I think the good part of it is that it’s going to really, I think, help make America, every state in America, more supportive of businesses. We’re going to have faster economic growth and more job creation all over the United States.”

After initially approving the sweeping tax reform Tuesday, House Republicans took a second vote Wednesday after the Senate parliamentarian reported that two provisions need to be removed, a K-12 education savings benefit and a small college endowment credit. Neither complied with Senate rules.

The revote in the House was similar to the first one, 224-201, with no Democrats in support. Tuesday’s vote was 227-203. The Senate approved it in the early morning hours Wednesday, 51-48, strictly along party lines.

“This bill is not tax reform. It is a tax giveaway to those that don’t need our help paid for by those who do,” House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, D-MD, said Tuesday. “This is reckless and dangerous deficit spending. … This raises taxes on 86 million Americans.”

Both of Illinois’ Democratic senators voted against the measure .

What does it mean in Illinois?

Oakbrook tax professional Michael Leonard of Leonard and Associates said there are some good things for Illinoisans, especially for businesses, big and small.

“It should make the small businesses be able to hire more and just keep more money in their pocket,” Leonard said. “It’s a very, very good thing because small business is what keeps the economy going.”

But he said the $10,000 cap on deductions for state and local taxes will hurt many Illinois taxpayers who pay some of the highest property taxes in the country. Leonard expects that to put pressure on state lawmakers to address the issue.

“They’ll have to do something,” Leonard said. “You can’t have all these high taxes and not have a break somewhere.”

Rauner said that’s all the more reason to enact the reform measures he’s promoted since first running for governor.

“It makes it all the more important that we make the type of changes that I’ve been recommending from Day 1: that we bring down the property taxes, that we work down the income tax hike that Speaker [Michael] Madigan forced through last June,” he said.

The General Assembly voted to override Rauner’s vetoes of budget bills and a $5 billion tax increase this summer.

Dan McCaleb is news director of Illinois News Network and the digital hub He welcomes your comments. Contact Dan at