US President Donald Trump gives a speech on tax reform at the Heritage Foundation's President's Club Meeting at a hotel in Washington, DC, on October 17, 2017. / AFP / Mandel NGAN
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Sen. Rand Paul split from the GOP to vote against the budget resolution, which squeaked by on an all-Republican vote of 51-49 Thursday night and unlocked the Senate's special procedure to pass a tax bill with only 50 votes.Amendments that were offered during a so-called vote-a-rama revealed a sharply divided Senate that leaves Republican leaders with few votes to spare in order to claim their first big legislative victory in the Trump administration.Republicans tacked on an amendment to the Senate budget that will enable the House to adopt it without the need for a messy conference committee before the legislating begins, said a House GOP leadership aide. Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee, a retiring Republican who has recently feuded with Trump, voted to advance the budget resolution, which allows a tax bill to raise the deficit by up to $1.5 trillion.Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, a moderate Republican, opposed the 1 percent amendment, but said she supports a tax on "millionaires and billionaires".Democrats also voted unanimously for an amendment to prevent tax legislation from adding to the deficit. Republicans banded together to reject it; their budget measure allows tax changes to add up to $1.5 trillion in new deficits over a decade.
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