In spite of his inflammatory rhetoric around crime and immigration, Donald Trump’s tax policy reveals a more positive side, says John Redwood MP.
So far Mr Trump has got into the race and stayed in it largely by dealing with the darker issues of crime, terrorism and migration. The US and EU establishments dislike his rhetoric associating crime with migration and his policy of a border fence or wall with Mexico.
Mr Trump does have a more positive side. His tax plans are for a major tax cut for America. He proposes that no-one on an income below $25,000 should pay any tax. He recommends just 4 bands of tax at zero, 10 per cent, 20 per cent with a top rate of just 25 per cent, making US personal income tax very attractive by advanced world standards. He wants to see a single 15 per cent rate of profits tax for all businesses, with a one off lower rate to get US corporations to repatriate profit and cash sitting offshore. He would abolish the death tax.
These proposals gained only a passing reference in his acceptance speech at the Republican Convention. If he starts to market these ideas more widely they could prove very appealing to many Americans. His tactic appears to be to detach worried low and middle income democrats to his cause by offering policies to boost their incomes and lower their tax bills. We know that many of them are not enamoured of Mrs Clinton, as they demonstrated by their support for Mr Sanders in the primaries.
Mr Trump is also attacking head on the past US establishment’s policy of military intervention in the Middle East. Whilst he is not an isolationist, he may well find a fertile political territory of people who resent the loss of life and the money expended on foreign wars, when there is little settled democratic government in the affected areas to show for them.