Democrats love the idea of a tax cut, just not the kind Republicans are offering.
It's been a decade since any congressional leader in the party authored a tax reform plan, and the last proposal, from then-House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., has very little in common with the Republican outline about to get a vote in Congress.
Rangel's proposal would have significantly raised taxes on top earners and closed dozens of corporate tax loopholes while slashing rates for the lower brackets.
The proposal was considered so progressive, shifting even more of the tax burden from low to higher earners, that Democrats themselves refused to fully endorse it. The plan never made it to the House floor even though Democrats held the House majority.
Now in the minority, Democrats are prepared to pounce on the GOP plan.
For most of them, the Republican tax reform outline released last month represents a big tax break for the nation's wealthiest with very little to offer for working class Americans.
"The vast majority of the steps in this plan would so outrageously benefit the wealthy," Rep. Judy, Chu, D-Calif., a member of the House Ways and Means Committee, told the Washington Examiner.
Democrats on that committee, which has jurisdiction over taxes, are not writing their own tax plan to offer as an alternative to the Republican proposal. Instead, they have held sessions with tax policy experts, summoned by Ways & Means ranking member Richard Neal, D-Mass., who helped them pick apart the GOP plan.
"It became abundantly clear for so many of us that we will only worsen the problem of inequality if we go with this type of plan, which gives substantial breaks to the wealthy," Chu said.
Parts of the GOP plan appeal to Democrats.
Chu and others approve of the plan's doubling of the standard deduction and increase in the child tax credit. And the GOP proposal, like Rangel's 2007 plan, abolishes the alternative minimum tax, which many middle and upper income earners end up paying even thought it was originally intended for the ultra-rich.
But Democrats oppose the GOP's plan to lower the rate for top earners from nearly 40 percent to 35 percent. They do not back increasing the lower income tax burden from 10 percent to 12 percent, even though the GOP said most people would pay nothing thanks to expanded deductions. Many oppose the new business tax rate pitched by the GOP, which they said will turn into another loophole to be exploited by the wealthy.
And they recoil at the idea of repealing the estate tax, another GOP provision, which they note would deprive the Treasury of $240 billion over the next decade.
"It would only benefit estates that are $5.5 million and above, who are mainly the lucky children of the wealthy?" Chu asked. "I don't see how that brings us forward as a country, in fact it brings us backwards."
Republicans don't expect any support from House Democrats and they typically don't need it thanks their significant majority.
The Senate is a different story. Republicans control only 52 seats and need at least 50 GOP lawmakers on board in order to pass the measure with the help of a tie-breaking vote by Vice President Pence.
Sens. Rand Paul, R-Ky., and Bob Corker, R-Tenn., have already criticized the bill, and Republicans are eyeing red-state Senate Democrats up for re-election in 2018 as possible "yes" votes if they can't round up enough of their own members.
One of the most vulnerable of those Democrats, Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., told the Washington Examiner she has no plans to back the GOP proposal.
McCaskill said she predicts the GOP plan, still lacking in detail, will not close enough of the loopholes Democrats are eager to rid from the tax code. And she believes the increase in the child tax credit will be more than offset by the personal deductions that would be ended.
She calculates a family of four in Missouri earning $50,000 annually would pay $887 more per year under the Republican plan.
"I would be wanting to focus on the things that would help those families that are living paycheck to paycheck," McCaskill said, adding that she opposes the plan to raise the lower tax bracket from 10 to 12 percent.
"I don't think it shows good faith that they are taking care of the middle class and lower economic strata of this country when they raise taxes on people who make $9,000 per year," McCaskill said.
Republicans say that new deductions will eliminate any tax burden for this income level, and say most of the people now paying 10 percent won't pay 12 percent, and will instead pay 0 percent. But McCaskill isn't buying it.
"Then why did they do it?" she asked.
Democrats told the Washington Examiner they are angry that Republicans have not invited them to the table for serious tax reform talks, a common complaint by the minority party when the majority is writing major legislation. Republicans made similar claims when majority Democrats wrote the Obamacare legislation.
The House Ways and Means Committee and Senate Finance Committee have held tax reform hearings and plan to hold markups of the GOP plan.
Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J., a Ways & Means Committee member who helped Rangel write the 2007 plan, said the GOP has shut them out.
"If you want to be fair, let's get in from the beginning," Pascrell said. "We should be participating."
Instead, Pascrell said, Democrats have been excluded except for a dinner with top Democratic leaders on taxes with Trump, which Pascrell called "a fake meeting."
Obama wasn't much better at working with the GOP. Democrats eventually wrote the healthcare bill without Republicans, Pascrell recalled.
"This is what Obama did, he paid the price," Pascrell said. "This guy is going to pay the price also."