Senate approves budget kick-starting GOP tax reform effort; Montana senators divided

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Senate voted Thursday to pass a budget resolution for next year that is mostly significant because it could make it easier for Republicans to pass major tax cuts, a top GOP priority.

The 51-to-49 vote was split mostly on party lines. Only GOP Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky voted no.

To help speed tax reform, Republican leaders in the House and Senate worked with the White House to craft a technical amendment that would clear the way for the House to take up the Senate version and pass it as is, according to two GOP sources. That took a logistical hurdle out of the way, underscoring GOP desire to move forward on the tax overhaul as soon as possible.