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How Trump Is Keeping It Close


Donald Trump’s economic plan is a joke. Since he’s a Republican, the centerpiece is a massive upper-class tax cut:

The centerpiece of Trump’s economic plan, as with any Republican economic plan since 1980, is a gigantic, regressive, debt-financed tax cut. The latest version of Trump’s tax cut is less gigantic and regressive than the previous one, using caps on deductions to recoup some of its hemorrhaged revenue. According to Trump, the new plan would reduce tax revenue by $4.4 trillion over a decade, but Trump promises the actual revenue loss would amount to far less due to the alleged dynamic effects of tax-cutting. Anybody who recalls Republicans’ warnings that the 1993 Clinton tax hike would fail to increase revenue, or that the Bush tax cuts would cause a boom, or that letting those tax cuts expire in 2013 would slow down the recovery, or that tax cuts in Kansas and Louisiana would increase growth might have skepticism that the supply-side fairy dust will finally work its magic.

Trump has amusingly framed his economic plan as a bid to restore 4 percent economic growth. This is amusing because he has stolen this goal from his former nemesis Jeb Bush, who in turn swiped it from his brother George W., whose post-presidential policy center made 4 percent growth through gigantic tax-cutting its main Big Idea. (Bush’s tax cuts did not produce 4 percent annual growth, but characteristically declined to let this failure shake their confidence in the theory behind the policy.) In his speech announcing his policy, Trump relied upon the magic of growth to fill in the gaping arithmetic holes in his proposals.

He also opposes not only environmental regulation but the FDA. And what isn’t policy for people who thought George W. Bush was too egalitarian and fiscally responsible is just incoherent:

On health care, Trump has probably the least coherent views of any question. He has repeated the requisite insistence that Obamacare is a disaster and must be repealed. Today he endorsed a Medicaid expansion on the grounds that “We have no choice, we’re not going to let people die in the streets.” This is unusual for many reasons. One is that the Medicaid expansion is a major feature of the Obama health-care law he insists he will repeal. After the Supreme Court altered the law to let states abstain from the Medicaid expansion, most Republican-led states did exactly that, at the urging of conservative activists. (Many Americans have died from lack of medical care as a result.) Is Trump repudiating this policy? His current health-care policy continues to advocate for a full repeal of Obamacare and a block grant of all Medicaid funding.

Since I happen to be staying in a hotel, I can tell you how the USA Today covered this:


His plan is not an “massive tax cut for the wealthy” but “created 15 million jobs.” That’s what you call in the tank.

Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton responded to Donald Trump’s howling lies “stretching the truth” about Clinton not having a child care plan. Right next to the Trump story is a story about that. The headline: “Clinton returns to campaign after days of sickness.” Hey, they’re getting the horserace they want!

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