Donald Trump Promises to Cut Taxes and Regulation ‘Massively’
President Donald Trump met with business CEOs and leaders on Monday morning, having a breakfast meeting where he promised to meet with them on a regular basis in his administration.
“We are going to be cutting taxes massively for both the middle class and for companies,” he said during the meeting. “And that’s massively. We’re trying to get it down to anywhere from 15 to 20 percent.”
Trump said that he would also cut regulations, something he said “surprised” him when he learned just how damaging some of the regulations could be.
‘[W]e are going to be cutting regulation massively … we think we can cut regulations by 75 percent,” he said.
The president met Michael S. Dell of Dell Technologies, Jeff M. Fettig of Whirlpool, Mark Fields of Ford Motor Company, Alex Gorsky of Johnson & Johnson, Marillyn A. Hewson of Lockheed Martin, Klaus Kleinfeld of Arconic, Andrew N. Liveris of Dow Chemical, Mario Longhi of U.S. Steel, Elon R. Musk of SpaceX, Kevin Plank of Under Armour, Mark S. Sutton of International Paper, and Wendell P. Weeks of Corning
Trump warned that any company that wanted to shift jobs overseas would be punished.
“If that happens, we are going to be imposing a very major border tax on the products when it comes in,” he said.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Opening his first official week in office, President Donald Trump warned business leaders Monday that he would impose a “substantial border tax” on companies that move their manufacturing out of the United States, while promising unspecified advantages to companies that manufacture domestically.
“All you have to do is stay,” he said during a morning meeting in the White House’s Roosevelt Room.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Marillyn Hewson of Lockheed Martin were among the executives who attended the meeting. The gathering kicked off a jam-packed day for the new president, including an evening reception with lawmakers from both parties and a sit-down with union leaders.
The president also planned to sign multiple executive orders in the Oval Office. Trump had pledged to quickly use his executive authority to withdraw the U.S. from the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact agreed to under the Obama administration. He’s also expected to sign an order implementing a federal government hiring freeze.
Trump ran for office pledging to overhaul U.S. trade policy, arguing that massive free-trade agreements have disadvantaged American workers. Since winning the White House, he’s aggressively called out companies that have moved factories overseas, vowing to slap taxes on products they then try to sell in the U.S.
“Some people say that’s not free trade, but we don’t have free trade now,” Trump said Monday. He also reiterated his campaign pledge to significant curb regulations, though he insisted that doing so would not compromise worker safety.
Trump’s outreach effort comes after a tumultuous first weekend in the White House that included lambasting news organizations for correctly reporting on the size of the crowds at his inauguration and mass protests against his presidency on the following day.
Trump delivered a more unifying message Sunday and sought to reassure Americans he was up to the daunting task ahead.
Speaking in the White House East Room during a swearing-in ceremony for top aides, the president warned his staff of the challenges ahead but declared he believed they were ready.
“But with the faith in each other and the faith in God, we will get the job done,” he said. “We will prove worthy of this moment in history. And I think it may very well be a great moment in history.”
Trump said his staff was in the White House not to “help ourselves” but to “devote ourselves to the national good.”
“This is not about party, this is not about ideology. This is about country, our country. It’s about serving the American people,” he said.
Earlier Sunday, Trump offered a scattershot response to the sweeping post-inauguration protests, first sarcastically denigrating the public opposition and then defending the right to demonstrate a short time later.
“Watched protests yesterday but was under the impression that we just had an election! Why didn’t these people vote? Celebs hurt cause badly,” Trump tweeted early Sunday morning. Ninety-five minutes later, he struck a more conciliatory tone.
“Peaceful protests are a hallmark of our democracy. Even if I don’t always agree, I recognize the rights of people to express their views,” the president tweeted, still using his personal account.
Trump also spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who accepted an invitation to visit the White House in early February. The prime minister said he is hoping to forge a “common vision” with the newly inaugurated U.S. president that could include expanded settlement construction and a tougher policy toward Iran.
Trump also announced that he’s set up meetings with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto.
“We’re going to start some negotiations having to do with NAFTA,” he said of his meeting with Pena Nieto. Mexico is part of the free trade agreement with the U.S. and Canada. Trump said he also will discuss immigration and security at the border. He has promised to build a wall along the length of the southern border and insisted that Mexico will pay for it.
Later in the week, he’ll address congressional Republicans at their retreat in Philadelphia and meet with British Prime Minister Theresa May.
Brit Prime Minister Theresa May and President Donald Trump are set to discuss a U.S.-UK trade deal which could see tariffs slashed and could make it easier for workers to move between the two countries when they meet later this week.
The British prime minister is set to be the first world leader to meet with President Trump following his inauguration last Friday – a possible indication that he views renewing the eroded special relationship between their two countries as a priority.
Speaking to the BBC’s Andrew Marr on Sunday, May confirmed that re-building the special relationship is a British priority also. She said:
What I think is important is that when I sit down with Donald Trump I’m going to be able to talk about how we can build on that special relationship. He’s already said to me that he wants to see a very strong relationship between the UK and the US going into the future. There are issues that we will work together on in the future.
He and people around him have also spoken of the importance of a trade arrangement with the United Kingdom and that is something they are looking to talk to us about at an early stage.
A No 10 official has been quoted as saying: “Trade between both countries is already worth over £150 billion and the US is the single biggest source of inward investment to the UK.”
Whitehall officials are understood to be discussing the possibility of tariffs for goods commonly traded between the two countries to be reduced or even scrapped entirely, while Mrs. May is thought to want to explore ways in which workers can move more easily between the two countries, The Telegraph has reported.
Currently, there are around one million British and American citizens living in each other’s countries. A senior British government source has said: “We can grow those numbers.”
Mr. Trump has already made it clear that he wants to strike an early agreement with Britain as a priority for his administration; however, British officials are said to be holding back in part as Britain has little expertise for striking trade deals having handed the responsibility over to the European Union (EU).
Although no official trade deal between Britain and the U.S. can be forged until Britain has officially left the EU, the talks could mark a pivot in British focus away from the European continent and back towards its historic ally America.
“There’s a Capitalist Living in the White House!” (Victoria Jackson)
WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump is hitting the ground running with a flurry of executive orders on his first full weekday in office, including a hiring freeze on all non-military federal government workers.
America employs 2.1 million civilian federal workers. That includes nearly 130,000 hired under President Obama, according to the Office of Management and Budget and the Labor Department.
Cutting the number of federal workers is listed as the second top priority in Trump’s 100-day action plan, his “Contract with the American Worker,” right behind proposing a constitutional amendment to impose term limits on all members of Congress.
Trump also signed an order announcing the United States’ intention not to join the Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, the trade agreement among 11 Pacific Rim countries strongly supported by former President Obama but not ratified by the Republican-controlled Congress.
The order withdraws the U.S. from the negotiating process.
“Great thing for the American worker, what we just did,” said the president.
Teamsters chief James Hoffa agreed and immediately praised the move, saying, “With this decision, the president has taken the first step toward fixing 30 years of bad trade policies that have cost working Americans millions of good-paying jobs.”
Former presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, D-Vt., also endorsed the move, but it was criticized by Republican Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Ben Sasse, R-Ne.
McCain called it, “a serious mistake that will have lasting consequences for America’s economy and our strategic position in the Asia-Pacific region.” But Sanders countered, “For the last 30 years, we have had a series of trade deals — including the North American Free Trade Agreement, permanent normal trade relations with China and others — which have cost us millions of decent-paying jobs and caused a ‘race to the bottom’ which has lowered wages for American workers.”
Trump was also expected to announce his administration’s intention to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, between the United States, Canada and Mexico, which began in 1994. But there has been no announcement on that, yet.
The president had already said on Sunday he planned to begin discussions soon with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Nieto to begin renegotiating NAFTA in order to secure more favorable terms for the U.S.
Trump signed an order to reinstate what’s called the Mexico City policy, cutting off foreign aid and federal funds for international nongovernmental organizations that provide or promote abortions. It also blocks federal funding for organizations that portray abortion as a form of family planning.
The policy was instituted by President Reagan in 1984 but dropped by President Obama in 2009.
The change will hurt funding for such abortion providers as International Planned Parenthood Federation, which operates in more than 180 countries. The pro-life website LifeNews estimated it will stop $400 million in federal funds going to such international abortion providers.
The website reported, “The order ensures U.S. foreign aid will continue to go to health care and humanitarian relief in the millions of dollars. It just will not subsidize abortion overseas.”
The executive order was strongly praised by Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J., Co-Chair of the Congressional Pro-Life Caucus, who said it affirmed a “political consensus that taxpayer dollars should not fund abortion and the abortion industry.”
He cited a Marist poll released today showing 83% of Americans oppose “using tax dollars to support abortion in other countries.”
“Without this protection in place, foreign NGOs (non-governmental organizations) receiving U.S. government funds promote and perform abortion throughout the world with the imprimatur of the United States,” said Smith.
“Organizations like Marie Stopes International and the International Planned Parenthood Federation have reported performing over 1 million abortions annually,” the congressman added. “Pro-abortion NGOs also set up additional projects overseas seeking to topple pro-life laws, imposing a new colonialism that fails to respect life-affirming cultures.”
Reggie Littlejohn, President of Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, said, “We are elated that U.S. taxpayer dollars will stop going to International Planned Parenthood, which has been working hand in hand with the Chinese Communist Party in their brutal, coercive population control program in China, which includes forced abortion and sterilization of women.”
“We published an open letter to then President-elect Trump, asking him to investigate and ultimately, to defund International Planned Parenthood for complicity with these women’s rights atrocities,” she added. “We are thrilled that he has taken this swift and decisive action. This is a huge victory for all those who have worked so hard to end abuses by IPPF and to relieve the suffering of women and babies in China.”
President Trump also placed a five-year ban on taking a lobbying job for anyone who leaves the administration.
He is also expected to issue executive orders undoing Obama’s orders on illegal immigration.
Trump is hosting a series of meetings at the White House, including one with business leaders and another one with union leaders.
“Busy week planned with a heavy focus on jobs and national security,” Trump tweeted early Monday. “Top executives coming in at 9:00 A.M. to talk manufacturing in America.”
During the meeting with business leaders, Trump said he would impose a “substantial border tax” on companies that build factories outside the United States, and promised benefits to companies that stay in the U.S.
“What we want to do is bring manufacturing back to our country,” said the president. “That doesn’t mean we don’t trade because we do trade. We want to make our products here.”
“All you have to do is stay,” he said during a morning meeting with top CEOs. He asked them to come back to him in 30 days with ideas to keep more manufacturing in America.
The head of Ford Motor Co. called it “a very, very positive meeting.”
“Walking out of the meeting today, I know I come out with a lot of confidence that the president is very, very serious in making sure the United States economy is going to be strong and have policies — tax, regulatory or trade — to drive that,” said Ford CEO Mark Fields.
Trump had previously blasted Ford’s plan to move small-car making to Mexico.
The president told business leaders he wants to cut regulations by 75 percent or more. “We’re going to be cutting regulation massively,” the president told reporters.
He also vowed to lower the business tax rate “down to anywhere from 15 to 20 percent” from the current 35 percent.
Trump also reiterated his intention to “massively” cut taxes for the middle class.
The new president also spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who said he has accepted an invitation to visit the White House next month.
Netanyahu said he hopes to share a “common vision” with Trump on a a tougher policy toward Iran.
Also invited to Washington was Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
During a phone call, Trump praised Sisi’s efforts fighting terrorism and Islamic extremism, and told him he appreciates the difficulties Egypt faces on those fronts.
Trump will hold his first meeting as president with the speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, R-Wisc. Later, he will hold a reception with other congressional leaders.
On Friday, the day he became president, Trump immediately signed an executive order that effectively stopped the enforcement of the individual mandate in Obamacare.
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