On Thursday, President Donald Trump and his administration debuted a series of new economic talking points on trade.
Trump, in a speech to Republican lawmakers in Philadelphia called for a change in the tax code to reduce trade deficits.
"We’re working on a tax reform bill that will reduce our trade deficits, increase American exports and will generate revenue from Mexico that will pay for the wall if we decide to go that route," said Trump.
White House press secretary Sean Spicer then followed this up with comments suggesting that the Trump administration is considering a 20% tax on imports, starting with Mexico, that would help finance the building of a border wall between the US and Mexico.
"When you look at the plan that’s taking shape now, using comprehensive tax reform as a means to tax imports from countries that we have a trade deficit from, like Mexico," said Spicer. "If you tax that $50 billion at 20 percent of imports — which is by the way a practice that 160 other countries do — right now our country’s policy is to tax exports and let imports flow freely in, which is ridiculous."
While Spicer later clarified that this was one of many options being looked at to pay for the wall, the suggestion set off a firestorm of attention.
The only problem is that Trump's, and later Spicer's, comments paint the picture of an unfocused plan that could do more harm than good if implemented.Read More...
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