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Manufacture This

The blog of the Alliance for American Manufacturing

But don't wait on him for details; those will come from Congress.

President Donald Trump was in Springfield, Missouri on Wednesday. Some of the locals were psyched, particularly this guy:

But the president wasn’t there simply to rally with supporters; he was there to make the case for tax reform. This administration has made no secret of its strong desire to overhaul the tax code – a reduction of the number of brackets, lots of rate cuts, and a big ol’ slash of the corporate rate from 35 percent to 15 percent are all on its wish list.  

That’s about all we got out of him on details, though.

While the speech was a little fiery (he blamed his typical foils in the Democratic Party for the failure of the GOP healthcare overhaul, and predicted they would “obstruct” him again) and chock full of “Made in America” rhetoric, it was scant on details.

That’s to be expected; it’s widely understood that Congress will write the actual tax reform package. The only difference between this big policy push and the failed healthcare effort over the summer? President Trump is actually stumping for this one, instead of just chirping about it from the sidelines.

Hence, his trip to Missouri. He’s headed out across the country, beating the bushes to turn out public support for the Congressional tax effort. There will be similar speeches.

We’re all for business tax reform, assuming it follows an underlying principle: It keeps in place provisions that help keep U.S. manufacturers competitive. Making stuff in America is capital-intensive, and capital is expensive to maintain.

Should President Trump and Congress push this thing over the finish line, it will be dismaying if manufacturing is made to finance a rate cut for the Walmarts and Amazons of the economy.