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Brady on CNBC: The centerpiece is permanence for families and small businesses

July 25, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This morning, House Ways and Means Chairman Brady (R-TX) joined CNBC’s “Squawk Box” to share the details of what he briefed House GOP Members on yesterday during a listening session for tax reform 2.0. Chairman Brady expanded on the three components that make up 2.0: protecting middle-class and small business tax cuts, promoting family savings, and spurring new business innovation.

On what is in tax reform 2.0:

“The centerpiece is permanence for families and small businesses, which is incredibly pro-growth [and] adds about a million-and-a-half new jobs and higher paychecks. But also, it’s really about changing the culture in Washington. You know, the original tax reform is changing the direction of the economy in a better way…

“But Washington tends to wait 30 years in between tax reform. We fall behind our competitors around the world [and] we junk up the tax code. So, we think we ought to do it differently––improve the tax code every year, make it more competitive, and more innovative…  

The other parts of 2.0 are some changes in savings to allow businesses to offer more plans, encourage workers and families to save more and earlier in their life. And then finally – the part I think you’ll like as well – we think America needs to continue to be innovative. There’s a new proposal that really helps brand-new entrepreneurs sort of take that next step in growth.  We think [it’s] incredibly pro-growth.”

On protecting middle-class and small business tax cuts: 

“You know, there are goofy budget rules in Washington, so we were able to make the corporate rates permanent because we had to get competitive. Now, this makes the family and the small business rate cuts permanent as well. We want families to be able to count on this as well as our small businesses. 

On spurring new business innovation:

“We think every year — just like the most successful businesses who are waking up every day thinking ‘how do we become more competitive, more innovative, and better?’ — we think Congress ought to always be focused on how we do the same thing with our tax code.  Because our competitors around the world are not going to stand still, we should always be looking to improve on them 

“And secondly, you know, I think the growth, I think our deficits would be higher if we hadn’t gotten this economy going and changed the trajectory of the US economy. So, I still think we have, in Washington, a spending problem, not a revenue problem… Washington has been taking more from Americans, it’s almost at a record high. Taxpayers are doing their share, I think Washington isn’t doing theirs. So, I think getting the economy going was a critical part of this.” 

On the booming economy and the impact of tariffs: 

“Tariffs are taxes.  They impede economic growth, they pick winners and losers. We do worry about that.  So far, I think our economic growth has been strong enough to overcome that, but over time there is going to be that impact. And back home, I can tell you in Texas, you know our manufacturers are losing work to foreign competitors…

“Because of the tariffs we’re seeing energy projects go up in price. Because of that, that’s why we’re working with the President to target these to China and unfairly traded products [and] take off the fairly traded products with countries like Canada, Mexico, and Europe.”

On keeping America competitive:

“As you know, from a growth and competitive standpoint, it’s not the individual rates, it’s the businesses rates on the competitiveness. And we know that now we have one of the more competitive designs in the world…

“But whether it’s Canada looking at lowering their rates to 20% and going to full expensing, Australia [and] other countries, we know, from the experience with the Reagan tax cuts, they don’t stand still. This competition is real, so the point of this is let’s never let America fall as far behind as we did in the past.”