Tax reform next

In Washington, with health reform all but dead for now, Congress is shifting focus to your taxes.

(NBC News) – In Washington, with health reform all but dead for now, Congress is shifting focus to your taxes.

The Senate plans to debate tax reform after Labor Day. “Our message is simple: a fairer and more simple tax code,” said White House Director of Legislative Affairs Marc Short.

Battle lines are already shaping up between Republicans and Democrats. “Most of the principles that would get the country growing again, they’re not interested in addressing,” said Senate Majority Leader, Senator Mitch McConnell.

45 democrats signed a letter outlining what they want:

No tax hike for the middle class, no tax break for the wealthy, open hearings, and no increase to the deficit.

But, it’s still not clear whether this end up in gridlock like healthcare. “If they decide to cut Democrats out of the process and do it by themselves, the same fate is likely to await them,” said Sen. Chuck Schumer, (D) New York.

The White House is reaching out. “We’ve engaged many Democrats They are excited about tax reform.” Marc Short, White House Director of Legislative Affairs

There is agreement to raise the debt ceiling over the next month, so the U.S. doesn’t land in default.

Meantime, the justice department is changing course.

An internal memo published by the New York Times suggests they’re going after colleges that discriminate against white applicants.

The president is not giving up on healthcare. He’s meeting with one lawmaker today who’s indicated he’s open to repeal.