On Monday, Donald Trump took the stage in the beleaguered city of Detroit to finally introduce his big economic plan. Mike Pence quickly introduced his boss before, presumably, hustling away to prepare for being the most powerful VP in history. That’s guaranteed to be a tough gig, but even tougher will be the task of Trump getting back on track after his very bad week. And what better way to do so than by promising to lower taxes and “open a new chapter in American Prosperity?”
Aside from a slightly saucy teleprompter gaffe, much of Trump’s speech was unusually composed. He dealt with (at least ten) protester interruptions, which were followed by awkward candidate smiles as he tried so hard to keep his composure. He succeeded, but still painted some doom and gloom into the speech while blaming Hillary Clinton for wanting to raise taxes: “In short, Detroit is the living, breathing example of my opponent’s failed economic agenda.” Trump claims that Clinton’s self-confirmed $1.3 billion tax hike will kill jobs, but his plan will lower taxes for all and promote more jobs than this country will be able to stomach.
Trump thinks that his core base will vote with their wallets, so he’s aiming to please with a “simplified” tax code. He promised that the poorest Americans will pay no income tax at all. This announcement was immediately followed by a crowd murmur, which may have had less to do with Trump’s shocking stance and more to do with another protester making their presence known. From there, Trump promised “across the board cuts” where the richest Americans will have to pay “their fair share” (but less than they currently do), and there will be only a few tax-bracket percentages, which could usher in some voter forgiveness:
Our current tax code is so burdensome and complex that we waste 9 billion hours a year in tax code compliance.
My plan will reduce the current number of brackets from 7 to 3, and dramatically streamline the process. We will work with House Republicans on this plan, using the same brackets they have proposed: 12, 25 and 33 percent. 14 For many American workers, their tax rate will be zero.
The current top income bracket currently hovers around 40% for the richest Americans, so that’s some significant saved change. With those cuts and the jobs Trump plans to bring back to the U.S., he boasts of being able to pump trillions of dollars back into the economy. Of course, Trump still hires foreign workers for his own Mar-a-Lago estate, and he’s still manufacturing products overseas. So, his promises should probably be taken with a grain of salt.
Trump also appealed to working mothers by invoking his daughter Ivanka — who could very well be his ace in the hole and saving grace — who he says will help him figure out how “to increase choice and reduce cost in childcare, offering much needed relief to American families.” This part of the plan will be forthcoming in the next few weeks, thanks to Ivanka “and an incredible team of experts.” Yep, this is definitely a candidate who wants to mend fences (and build a wall).
Will this speech help boost Trump’s flagging poll ratings? Tim Kaine tweeted his unimpressed feelings prior to the event, and it’s safe to say one speech hasn’t changed his mind.