Rep. Paul Ryan said in an interview yesterday that he was optimistic that tax reform would be advanced early next year. Ryan said, “Tax reform? Watch the Ways and Means Committee in the first quarter of next year. We're going to be advancing tax reform legislation because we think that's a key ingredient to getting people back to work, to increasing take-home pay, to grow this economy." Ryan currently serves as Chairman of the House Budget Committee and is expected to be selected as the next Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee in 2015. Rep. Dave Camp is term-limited as Chairman. The House has recessed for the remainder of the year.

Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus is expected to release two tax reform discussion drafts this week before the Senate recesses for the year. Late last week, Baucus said, “We're going to publish a couple discussion drafts next week, and I think you have a pretty good idea what they are." The drafts are expected to be on energy and education.

Baucus also said that he plans to address expiring tax provisions “as soon as we can” in 2014. Baucus is retiring at the end of 2014.