President Trump goaded Congress on Wednesday to “move fast” on what he called the “biggest Tax Cut & Tax Reform package in the history of our country,” a swipe at Republicans divided over the scope and mechanics of a deal still in the works.
Tax cuts are the GOP’s top fall priority. Trump advisers and congressional leaders are working to assemble a framework that they hope to release next week, The Washington Post reported Wednesday. The biggest disagreement is over how to pay for the vision Trump outlined in April, including what tax breaks should be eliminated.
White House officials are still hopeful that they can lower the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 15 percent. Many congressional Republicans, however, think that goal is ambitious.
In private talks, Trump advisers are pressing to eliminate or reduce several popular tax deductions, including the interest companies pay on debt, state and local income taxes paid by families and individuals, and the hugely popular mortgage interest deduction, The Post reported.
Trump invited a bipartisan group of senators to the White House for dinner on Tuesday, with taxes high on the agenda. He will see a bipartisan group of House members Wednesday.
White House officials believe that the devastating hurricanes in August and September could be a major drag on short-term economic growth and show a weak economy in the third quarter.
“I would say there clearly is going to be an impact on [gross domestic product] in the short run,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said at a New York conference Tuesday.
Trump could be trying to draw a connection to this in his most recent Twitter post, as he argues that the impact of the giant storms should create more urgency for Congress to act.
But Trump’s new plea ignores the view of many economists, and even his treasury secretary, as they believe the economic impact of hurricanes can be short-lived. The near-term slowdowns are almost always followed by big building booms that result in a burst of economic activity. Mnuchin predicted this would happen on Tuesday.
“We will make it up in the long run,” Mnuchin said. “As we rebuild, that will help GDP. It won’t have a bad impact on the economy.”