What does Trump want in tax reform? Spoiler alert—it’s not middle class tax cuts

[ Originally published on this site as post ]

Donald Trump took a break Wednesday from caring about southeast Texas drowning in order to talk about something that really matters to him—corporate tax cuts. He travelled to Missouri to talk about his tax “reform” plan. What was missing almost entirely from that discussion of his plan was, well, a plan. His speech was remarkably free of any specific policy proposals, except for one.

Trump gave few details at a Wednesday speech in Springfield, Missouri, instead offering very broad priorities: a tax break for the middle class; fewer “loopholes”; bringing home companies’ overseas profits; a much lower corporate tax rate.

Only on that final component did Trump attach a specific number – 15 percent as a goal, down from the current 35 percent maximum. And it is that piece that would provide a huge benefit to the wealthiest Americans, who own a disproportionate share of the nation’s businesses, either directly or through shares of stock.

Trump said providing that tax cut would help middle- and working-class Americans because businesses would hire more employees. “We must reduce the tax rate on American businesses so they keep jobs in America, create jobs in America, and compete for workers right here in America,” Trump said at Loren Cook Company, a manufacturer of fans and blowers. “Millions of struggling citizens will be lifted from welfare to work. They will love getting up in the morning. They will love going to their job. They will love earning a big, fat, beautiful paycheck.”

Where have we heard that before, right? By the way, right now taxes paid by all but the very wealthiest of Americans are lower than they’ve been since the Reagan administration. During the campaign, the “populist” Trump insisted that he “would increase the burden on those ‘making hundreds of millions of dollars’ in income, ‘because right now they are paying very little tax.'” He was lying.

As of now, there is no legislation written, and there is no plan from the White House. In fact, they’ve pretty much outsourced that whole thing to the Republican leadership which Trump has been at war with for the past several weeks. Trump continued the belligerence toward Congress, ad-libbing from his prepared remarks to tell the Republican delegation from Missouri in the audience “I don’t want to be disappointed by Congress, do you understand me?”