Monday, September 11, 2017
Steven Mnuchin and Gary D. Cohn have spent countless hours working toward putting forth a plan outlining comprehensive tax reform. Among President Trump’s most notable campaign promises, there has been insubstantial progress toward achieving any change in the tax code in the past few months. Even if successful, it seems the ambitious cuts sought by President Trump will miss the original mark by a wide margin: a 20% to 25% corporate tax rate instead of the promised 15%, and a tax ceiling for the top marginal tax rate that may stay at 39.6%.
The few baby steps the men have taken to accomplish their goal has been met with ridicule and scorn. The one-page document the pair presented this past April, written in multiple fonts and various type styles, drew the derision of lawmakers and tax specialists alike. Many in Washington believe the document represents an administration wholly unprepared to handle the upcoming legislative battle entailed by such impressive reform. Senator Ron Wyden, a Democrat out of Oregon, commented: “From the standpoint of getting real tax reform, which takes buy-in from both sides, they have just frittered months and months away needlessly.”
See Julie Hirschfeld Davis and Kate Kelly, Two Bankers Are Selling Trump’s Tax Plan. Is Congress Buying?, The New York Times, August 28, 2017.
Special thanks to Naomi Cahn (Harold H. Greene Professor of Law, George Washington University School of Law) for bringing this article to my attention.