The Grand Old Party is trying its hand at tax reform, a trick not seen since President Ronald Reagan forged an alliance with House Speaker Tip O’Neill in 1986. Unfortunately, the current Republican tax plan forgoes the bipartisan spirit of ’86 in favor of one-party control and arcane Senate rules that allow them to avoid a filibuster.

As with all reform, there are clear winners and losers. The Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy stated in a report that “nearly a third (of the cuts) would go to the richest 1 percent in 2018, and by 2027 that fraction would rise to nearly half.” That Republicans would peddle a tax cut that benefits the wealthy and corporations, while raising the deficit that they spent years railing against, is outrageous.

Tax reform should be designed to help the people who need it most: poor working families. A study by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities found that children who grew up in low-income households that received an additional $3,000 of annual income through working-family tax credits earned 17 percent more as adults when compared with children whose families did not receive the extra income. This outcome benefits the entire society and puts an end to the cycle of poverty that traps many families.

This is why the Maine congressional delegation should stand up to the Republican tax bill. It will only perpetuate income inequality and, in the long run, hurt the people who need the most help.

Olin Jenner

Portland