MacArthur the Only NJ House Member to Vote Yes on GOP Tax Bill

Tom MacArthur. Kevin B. Sanders for Observer

All but one member of New Jersey’s 12-member House delegated voted against the national Republican tax plan on Tuesday, with Rep. Tom MacArthur breaking ranks with the rest of the state delegation (made up of 7 Democrats and 5 Republicans) to cast his vote in favor of a sweeping tax overhaul backed by President Trump.

Opponents say the tax bill will be detrimental to the middle class, particularly due to the reduction of the State and Local Tax Deduction, while simultaneously padding the pockets of the wealthy and corporations. But supporters say that the bill will lead to a massive tax cut and put thousands more into the pockets of average homeowners. The bill has been particularly unpopular in high-tax states like New Jersey.

Now that the bill has passed the House, it could be voted on in the Senate as early as Tuesday night.

Here is how every House member from New Jersey voted:

Rep. Donald Norcross (D-1) – No

Norcross voted no on the House bill, claiming that the approval of the bill “may be the worst vote ever” for New Jersey families. Norcross also noted the there was bi-partisan agreement among all but one New Jersey House member that the bill was not right for New Jersey or other similarly high-cost states.

Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-2) – No

LoBiondo was one of the four state Republicans to vote no on the bill.

“While improvements have been made from the House-passed version to retain deductions for medical and educational expenses, the $10,000 collective cap on state and local income tax and property tax deductions will be detrimental in my high-tax state of New Jersey,” LoBiondo said in a statement before the vote. “I will be voting NO as it is in the best interest of my South Jersey constituents.”

Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-3) – Yes

MacArthur was the only New Jersey House member to vote in favor of the bill.

“I am doing what is best for my district, my state and my country,” MacArthur told Observer on Tuesday.

MacArthur’s 2018 midterm opponent Andy Kim seized on the vote, holding a 300-person rally opposing MacArthur on Monday night.

Rep. Chris Smith (R-4) – No

Smith has been a solid no on the legislation since the earliest drafts of the bill. He voted no on Tuesday.

Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-5) – No

On Twitter, Gottheimer said that the tax bill will “crush New Jersey” and contribute to the trend of outmigration in the state.

Rep. Frank Pallone (D-6) – No

Pallone has been a vocal opponent of the bill, often calling it the “GOP tax scam.”

Rep. Leonard Lance (R-7) – No

According to Lance, his main issue with the legislation are the changes it would bring to the SALT deduction, something that is widely used in New Jersey.

“I favor retention of the deductibility of state and local taxes in their entirety, and I’m sorry that that was not the view of the conference committee,” Lance told the New York Times last week. “For me, $10,000, regardless of the configuration, is not strong enough.”

Rep. Albio Sires (D-8) – No

Sires has argued that the GOP tax plan favors corporations over residents. He voted no on Tuesday.

Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-9) – No

On the floor of the House before the vote on Tuesday, Pascrell said that the bill is a “stick it the middle class” legislation.

Rep. Donald Payne, Jr. (D-10) – No

Payne voted no on Tuesday. At an event held earlier this month, he said that the plan “is an elitist scam” and joined with other Democrats to criticize provisions that could make college more expensive for some students.

Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-11) – No

“The people of New Jersey already carry an extremely heavy tax burden,” said Frelinghuysen in a statement on Tuesday. “They need and deserve tax cuts. Unfortunately, H.R. 1 caps the federal deduction for state and local taxes (SALT) which will lead to tax increases for far too many hardworking New Jersey families. This legislation will also damage our state’s housing market and business environment.”

While Frelinghuysen voted no on Tuesday –an on an earlier version of the tax plan– he was the only New Jersey House member to vote in favor of a GOP budget resolution that included this an earlier form of the tax plan, something that Frelinghysen said he had to do because he needed to get important appropriations bills through the house. He is the chair of the House Appropriations Committee.

“Congressman Frelinghuysen paved the way for this disastrous tax bill when he voted for it as chairman of the Appropriations Committee, allowing the bill to reach the floor for a vote in the House today,” his Democratic midterm opponent Mikie Sherrill said in a statement following the vote. “If he had stood up in the beginning and voted no, the people of New Jersey would not be facing this tax hike.”

Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-12) – No

Watson Coleman, a no vote, took to Twitter after the bill passed the House.

MacArthur the Only NJ House Member to Vote Yes on GOP Tax Bill