Kill the GOP Tax Plan Rally, 12.02.2017

Democratic Jane Raybould, a candidate for U.S. Senate,  speaks Saturday to a group of more than 100 people gathered on the state Capitol steps to protest the GOP tax bill. 

KAYLA WOLF, Journal Star

Both Nebraska senators voiced approval of the Republican-sponsored tax overhaul bill passed in the Senate early Saturday. 

Deb Fischer and Ben Sasse, who both voted for the nearly 500-page Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, praised the bill in statements Saturday.

"It delivers relief for middle-class families, promotes small-business growth, and makes America's corporations competitive globally," Fischer said in a news release.

Sasse cited a proposed increased child tax credit and adoption tax credit, but said in the statement that the bill "isn't as good as it could be."

"Congress is still failing to grapple with our entitlement overpromising, and there is far too little being done to upend the D.C. culture of lobbyists over families," Sasse said in a statement.

The bill passed on a 51-49 vote, with no Democratic support and one Republican, Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee, voting no. 

Senate candidate and Democrat Jane Raybould, who hopes to take Fischer's seat in 2018, criticized the bill, saying it would raise taxes on Nebraskans, cripple Medicare and pass "over $1 trillion" in debt to future generations. 

"Fischer and (Majority Leader Mitch) McConnell are trying to sell a false bill of goods to the American people," Raybould said in a statement.

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Democrats in the Senate criticized the Republicans' quick push to pass the bill, introducing handwritten edits just hours before Saturday's early morning vote.

A rally protesting the bill was held on the steps of the state Capitol on Saturday afternoon. Organizer Cathy Lohmeier estimates 125 people attended.

Raybould and congressional candidate Dennis Crawford told the crowd to continue to speak up against the bill. 

"This hurts the average Nebraskan," said speaker Susan Martin, president of Nebraska AFL-CIO. "It'll hurt the elderly, the disabled, college students — the only ones it won't hurt is the rich and the corporations. In Nebraska, we've got a pioneer spirit, so we're going to band together to make sure this doesn't happen."

Reach the writer at 402-473-7214 or zhammack@journalstar.com

On Twitter @zach_hammack 

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