The Senate passed a Budget Resolution last night on a near party-line vote, with Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky bolting to join the Democrats to vote against it. The substance of the resolution is not as important as the fact that it sets up a vote on a Tax Reform measure that can pass the Senate for 50 plus one votes instead of 60 votes. The question is, will the Senate pass tax reform or, as Hot Air is afraid it will do, blow it like it did Obamacare twice?

Why the Senate may blow it again?

Unless some Democrats cross the aisle, which seems doubtful but miracles can happen, nearly the entire Senate Republican caucus has to hold together.

Of the 53 Republican senators, Paul, John McCain, Jeff Flake, Lisa Murkowski, and Susan Collins remain cantankerous and could vote against tax reform out of spite or some minor objection, thus sinking the measure.

On the other hand

On the other hand, as the old saying goes, there is nothing like the prospect of being shot in the morning to concentrate the mind. The conventional wisdom is that if Congressional Republicans blow tax reform on top of punting on Obamacare repeal and replace, their voters will become so irate and dispirited that they will stay home in 2018, allowing Democrats to sweep all before them, capturing both houses of Congress. That event would make the last two years of the first term of Trump a living h*ll and not just for supporters of the president.

The Never Trumpers will live to regret the horrors that a Democratic-dominated Congress would be capable of.

Also, the stock market has taken some kind of tax reform into account as it continues to soar to dizzying heights. If senate Republicans fumble cutting taxes, something that should be as natural to then as breathing, then the markets will melt down, probably taking the economy from a recovery back to a recession.

Some reasons for hope

Murkowski, Collins, and Paul have indicated that they are likely yes votes on tax reform as it is currently shaking up to be, a package of middle class and business tax cuts designed to give a stimulative effect on the economy. If they don’t flake out (not a zero probability proposition to be sure), then tax reform may well pass the Senate by the end of this year or early next year.

The upshot is, do not count on a victory concerning Tax reform until it actually happens. People hate the Washington establishment, after all, for a reason. Senate Republicans would be advised not to provide another one,