With Republicans controlling both houses of the U.S. Congress, expats might see changes in the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, which requires reporting of assets.
Expats have long pushed for modifications of the law that is designed to catch tax cheats. Many faced discrimination from local banks because of the U.S. law. Foreign banks were required to make reports to U.S. officials, so many simply chose not to have U.S. customers.
Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio, the Republican tax expert in the Senate has said he wants to repeal the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act and has helped put that proposal into the Republican National Committee’s platform.
Although he has only been in the Senate four years, Portman served as a congressman and also was the principal Republican fundraiser for this election. He is a leading candidate for a chairmanship of a Senate subcommittee, according to Washington insiders.
Getting rid of the legislation known as FATCA is not just a Republican project. Democrats in Congress also have voiced opposition to the law.
A Republican Senate also will review President Barack Obama’s appointments for ambassador. S. Fitzgerald Haney has been named as the new ambassador for Costa Rica. The New Jersey man and his wife, Andrea, a rabbi, are donors to Democratic causes and to Obama’s two presidential campaigns.
The Senate, still controlled by Democrats, has been slow to confirm Obama’s appointments. So Haney may be left facing a Republican-controlled Senate.
He appeared before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee July 29. His name was placed on the Senate calendar for action Sept. 18, but there has been no further action.
Republicans in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives also are expected to have an impact on the administration’s immigration policy.
Although the number of Republicans anticipated in the Senate is not large enough to override an Obama veto, they do have the power to halt funding for administration programs. There is expected to be considerable negotiations.