The GOP tax reform package, set to return some $220 billion back to Americans, will have a significant impact on the 46 percent of Americans who have just a $400 cushion in savings, according to a congressional analysis.

Two Republicans, Pat Meehan of Pennsylvania and Tom Reed of New York, told a Ripon Society audience that the package will be a lifesaver for some Americans.

According to Meehan, the most important benefit will be higher take-home pay.

“One estimate I saw said tax reform will put $220 billion into people's pockets next year. That may not all go automatically into spending; about two-thirds of that will go into savings for people. But about one-third will find its way into the economy. More than 46 percent of Americans are living on a $400 dollar cushion. Think about that – almost half the people. If they had a problem I had this week where my refrigerator went out, that's a cataclysmic event for them. So when you start to bring money back to them, that's the kind of thing that can make a difference.”

Meehan agreed, and said that the GOP has to keep speaking out on the benefits so that people don’t buy into Democratic criticisms.

“That gives us a great opportunity when we go back and talk to people, and people get to see the benefits in their checks, the cash in their savings accounts, and the opportunities that they are going to have with the potential jobs that are going to come online,” he said.

“When you pass a piece of legislation like tax reform, details matter,” Reed added.

Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at