Trump turns back to tax overhaul
WASHINGTON — After days dominated by friction with his secretary of state and a Republican senator, President Donald Trump is trying to refocus on his top legislative priority, traveling to Pennsylvania to pitch his tax overhaul as a boon for truckers.
Trump speech in Harrisburg was to be set against a backdrop of big rigs, with lots of truckers in attendance, according to the White House. The president has been traveling the country to promote a plan that would dramatically cut corporate tax rates from 35 percent to 20 percent, reduce the number of personal income tax brackets and boost the standard deduction.
At his latest stop, Trump planned to argue that his tax reform framework would benefit truckers by lowering their tax rates, boosting manufacturing, and making it easier for families to pass their trucking businesses on to their children.
“When your trucks are moving, America is growing. That is why my administration is taking historic steps to remove the barriers that slow you down,” Trump said in prepared excerpts released by the White House. “America first means putting American truckers first.”
Trump is diving back into the tax fight after weeks in which his attention has shifted to rapidly emerging crises — including the mas shooting in Las Vegas and the hurricane recovery effort in Puerto Rico — as well as dramas of his own making, such as his escalating feud with Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., and public tension with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
Taxes are the chief legislative priority for Republicans hungry for a major legislative achievement. With the 2018 campaign year looming, GOP lawmakers want something to show for their time as the majority party, and tax legislation remains their best hope.
Trump has left it up to Congress to fill in many specifics of his plan, which omits details such as the income levels for his new tax brackets.