Divorce Mediation Blog

Why was the GOP out to get Alimony?

Monday, January 22, 2018

Levine Dispute Resolution - Alimony

Well, they did it. In December, Congress repealed the alimony deduction, and as a result, support for divorce families will become more expensive and less generous, beginning in 2019.

Unbeknownst to us, the federal alimony deduction was on Republican chopping block wish list for a long time, with previous failed repeal attempts in 1984 and 2014. Few of us thought it important enough to the president or the GOP caucus to actually make it happen this time, especially when the senate bill did not mention it in its bill. Boy, were we wrong.

The question is: why?

To save majority lawmakers from having to reach actual consensus with Democrats, God forbid, by keeping the red ink caused by the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act below $1.5 trillion over the next ten years, permitting a budget reconciliation maneuver and permitting passage on Republican votes only?

Whatever happened to simplification and revenue neutrality: watchwords of tax reform and Republican faith, for as long as memory serves? Not this Congress, and not this time.

But, really, how much did it help that cause? According to the House Ways and means Joint Committee on Taxation, repeal of the alimony deduction, upon which divorcing families have relied for three-quarters of a century, will “save” $8.3 billion from the aggregate deficit over 2018-2027. See here.

A drop in the bucket…

… especially in context. When a Fox Business reporter asked Treasury Secretary Mnuchin about the president’s abandonment of his campaign-guaranteed crackdown on carried interest preferences for private equity and hedge fund principals, which would have saved an estimated $100 billion over the same ten years, he blathered that, “…it’s not that much money…”. Really. Listen for yourself here.

So, we come back to “why”, if not budget reconciliation? Was it the moralism of Paul Ryan’s wing of the GOP, punishing divorcing families for their failings? If so, we are dangerously more like the theocratic regimes that our president loves to praise or castigate, depending on his momentary whim, than we like to believe.

In the meantime, families are the collateral damage. So much for family values.

Get e-mail notifications of new blog posts! Enter email address below.:

Delivered by FeedBurner

other articles

recent posts


family law high-risk methodology alimony statute Baseball Players Obamacare Baseball Arbitration family law arbitrator Levine Dispute Resolution Cohabitation alimony reform legislation how baseball arbitration works Massachusetts lawyers Massachusetts alimony and child support Matrimonial Arbitration child support conciliation divorce and family law mediators pre-ARA alimony disputes divorced divorce arbitration lawyer-attended mediation Divorce Agreements Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly MLB labor agreement IRC §2704 family support family mediation divorce lawyers Family Law Arbitration Levine Dispute Resolution Center med/arb lawyer special master facilitated negotiations mediations divorce mediations Major League Baseball Arbitration divorce mediator divorce process mediation SJC arbitration Same Sex Marriage COLA litigation lawyers divorce arbitrator Alimony Reform Act arbitrator health insurance self-adjusting alimony annulment Massachusetts divorce mediators family law arbitrators divorce mediation arbitrators divorce arbitrators divorce agreement Levine Dispute Resolution Center LLC Uniform Arbitration Act support orders DOMA Massachusetts alimony rehabilitative alimony med-arb divorce mediators separation traditional negotiations Divorce LDRC Baseball alimony General term alimony medical benefits resolve disputes Chouteau Levine family law mediation divorce judgment alimony orders Child Support Guidelines Massachusetts Levine Dispute Resolutions mediators health coverage alimony law private dispute resolution divorce litigation Self-adjusting alimony orders family and probate law disputes Act Reforming Alimony in the Commonwealth dispute resolution fraud Defense of Marriage Act The Seven Sins of Alimony Massachusetts divorce lawyers Boston divorce and family law Massachusetts Alimony Reform Act mediator