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Sen. Portman Lobbies To Keep 401(k) Incentives In GOP Tax Plan

J. Scott Applewhite
Associated Press
Sen. Rob Portman walks to vote on the Republican health care bill.

Sen. Rob Portman says he believes the GOP tax plan will encourage growth, stimulate wages and would at least not add to the deficit. But, there’s one part of the package he’s fighting.

Portman says he’s been making the argument that cutting how much can be put into tax-exempt 401(k) retirement savings accounts is bad public policy. He says Americans don’t save enough as it is, and he’s been working on providing more incentives for saving since he was in the House of Representatives in the 1990s.

Portman acknowledges, under the GOP tax plan, people would still have access to IRAs to save.

“But for most people, particularly young people, they want to get the gratification of that deduction in order to save," Portman said. "And the last thing you want to do right now is discourage people from saving.”

On a separate issue, Portman says he would not support a bipartisan compromise that makes changes in the Affordable Care Act unless it provides more Health Savings Accounts, high-risk pools and flexibility for states.