Posted: May 20, 2016
I am not sure what to do about Donald Trump. The presumptive Republican Party nominee for president who boasts about his business skills and Wharton education insists they'd translate into a brilliant and effective public policy. But voters who cite the economy as their biggest concern have helped propel the billionaire businessman toward the Republican nomination.
I understand why Trump is so popular, especially with many of those who would normally vote as blue-collar workers. But I have to wonder how Trump would handle working with Congress on the federal budget. On the spending side, Trump wants to leave Social Security untouched, even though it and other benefit programs have climbed to nearly two-thirds of government spending as Baby Boomers retire. Trump also wants to spend more money on the nation's crumbling infrastructure, which is a great idea, but also expensive.
There are those who say that the Trump tax plan (I didn't know he had one) will cut business taxes from the highest in the world to 15 percent, making our rate one of the lowest. Small businesses, the backbone of our economy, will see their tax rate fall from close to 40 percent to 25 percent. Getting rid of tax loopholes will help pay for the reductions for companies who want to invest more and hire more workers.
On the other hand, Trump's approach to the federal budget would balloon annual deficits and render his promise to pay off the $19 trillion national debt in eight years is just ridiculous. Just to come up with his tax cuts, he would have to come up with about $4 trillion a year, about what the entire government costs annually.
I understand that people are frustrated with the way politics is done in this country. In fact, by more than a two-to-one ratio, Americans think the country is headed in the wrong direction. Wages are falling or are flat for all but those in the top 10 percent. Our national debt has risen by almost $8 trillion in the last seven years.
But if a Trump employee played as fast and loose with the numbers as Trump the candidate does, Trump the chief executive wouldn't hesitate to say "You're fired"!
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