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 In December, Congress repealed the alimony deduction, and as a result, support for divorce families will become more expensive and less generous, beginning in 2019.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 arbitrators Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly Massachusetts Alimony Reform Act fraud family law mediation arbitrator Baseball Massachusetts divorce mediators Levine Dispute Resolution Center LLC divorce judgment high-risk methodology divorce mediators Massachusetts divorce lawyers special master family mediation COLA Divorce Agreements how baseball arbitration works IRC §2704 alimony statute Defense of Marriage Act lawyer-attended mediation alimony orders separation arbitration Boston family law pre-ARA alimony Family Law Arbitration resolve disputes family support Alimony Reform Act LDRC lawyer SJC mediators Divorce divorce and family law Baseball Players Massachusetts alimony and child support Self-adjusting alimony orders divorce and family law mediators divorce litigation divorce lawyers med/arb Act Reforming Alimony in the Commonwealth mediation rehabilitative alimony medical benefits dispute resolution traditional negotiations divorce agreement Levine Dispute Resolution divorce arbitration Baseball Arbitration The Seven Sins of Alimony Massachusetts lawyers Uniform Arbitration Act General term alimony conciliation divorce arbitrator mediations Chouteau Levine disputes divorce mediation Massachusetts annulment Same Sex Marriage Levine Dispute Resolutions Levine Dispute Resolution Center private dispute resolution divorce mediations litigation Obamacare MLB labor agreement alimony law alimony Major League Baseball Arbitration Matrimonial Arbitration divorced divorce arbitrators health coverage arbitrators divorce mediator facilitated negotiations family law arbitrator divorce process support orders family and probate law disputes health insurance self-adjusting alimony lawyers Cohabitation alimony reform legislation Massachusetts alimony DOMA child support Child Support Guidelines mediator med-arb