Steve Mnuchin (AP/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Steve Mnuchin can't guarantee that Trump's tax reform plan will help middle class Americans

The Treasury secretary also walked back his suggestion that Trump would never release his tax returns


Taylor Link
April 27, 2017 5:31PM (UTC)

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin cannot say for sure if President Donald Trump's new tax overhaul will benefit the middle class. When asked on "Good Morning America" Thursday whether he could guarantee that a middle-class family will pay less under the current plan, Mnuchin revealed that he could make no such promise.

"I can't make any guarantees until this thing is done and it’s on the president's desk," Mnuchin finally said, after he side-stepped the first two or three questions from George Stephanopoulos. "But I can tell you, that’s our number one objective in this."

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Trump had indicated in the past that taxes for the wealthy would ultimate go up once negotiations are complete. As of right now, however, the wealthy appear to be the only winners in the new tax plan.

Stephanopoulos asked Mnuchin if the wealthy stand to see their taxe rate drop. Again, Mnuchin avoided answering the question directly.

"The focus right here is lowering the top rate in return for eliminating deductions and special interest," he said. "This is about making tax simpler and getting rid of special interest."

Stephanopoulos pressed Mnuchin, asking if the objective was to have "no absolute tax cuts for the wealthy."

"That's the objective," Mnuchin responded.

Before the interview ended, Savanna Guthrie asked Mnuchin to clarify a statement he made during Wednesday's press briefing about Trump's tax returns. Mnuchin said Wednesday that the president had no intention to release his tax returns, despite assurances made in the past that he would release them once the audit was complete.

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On Thursday, Mnuchin seemed to walk back that assertion.

"I'm going to let the president decide what he's going to do in the future," he said. "That is obviously up to him."


Taylor Link

Taylor Link is an assistant editor at Salon. You can find him on Twitter at @taylorlink_

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Donald Trump Middle Class Steve Mnuchin Tax Code Tax Plan Tax Reform Treasury Department

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