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The House GOP’s Idea for Business Taxes Could Win Bipartisan Support

Tax reform, without the tweets.
Photo illustration by 731; Photograph: YouTube

The number of tweets that President-elect Donald Trump strings together on a topic seems to indicate its importance to him. His tirade on Dec. 4 against companies that move jobs overseas was an impressive six-tweeter. “There will be a tax on our soon to be strong border of 35% for these companies ...... wanting to sell their product, cars, A.C. units etc., back across the border,” he wrote in the weekend tweetstorm.

Trump is right that the U.S. is losing jobs overseas, and he’s right that the broken U.S. tax code is part of the problem. But even the people who should be his closest allies—top Republicans in Congress—couldn’t stomach his solution of punitive tariffs on imports from selected companies. “I think there’s other ways to achieve what the president-elect is talking about,” House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) told reporters the next day. “I don’t want to get into some type of trade war.” Another House Republican, Justin Amash of Michigan, issued his own tweet: “This would be a 35% tax on all Americans—a tax that especially hurts low-income families. Maybe the slogan should be #MakeAmericaVenezuela.”