Trump signs tax reform bill before Florida vacation because cable news thought he wouldn't

Trump says he rushed signing the bill because cable news thought he wouldn't — then he flew to his Mar-a-lago club

By Matthew Rozsa

Published December 22, 2017 12:55PM (EST)

 (AP/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
(AP/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

President Donald Trump signed his $1.5 trillion tax reform bill in the Oval Office on Friday, along with a $4 billion missile defense bill.

During the informal ceremony at the Oval Office, Trump told reporters that he wanted to sign the bill into law as quickly as possible because  "every one of the networks said, 'Will he keep his promise?'" about passing tax reform legislation by Christmas.

"I didn't want you folks to say I wasn't keeping my promise," he said. "We did a rush job today and it wasn't fancy. We expected a formal ceremony in two weeks."

Trump also claimed that "corporations are literally going wild" over his tax reform bill, echoing comments he has made on his Twitter feed on Thursday and Friday.

Trump claimed that he received a phone call from Robert Kraft, the owner of the New England Patriots, who told him that as a result of the tax reform legislation he was going to build "a tremendous paper mill."

The president also boasted about the tax reform bill being an indirect way of repealing the Affordable Care Act, the landmark health care reform legislation passed by President Barack Obama.

"I think Obamacare is over," Trump told reporters, adding that "we have essentially repealed Obamacare."

After the signing was over, Trump gave out pens to various reporters covering it, praising them for having "worked very hard" and "very fairly."

In addition to signing the tax reform legislation, Trump also signed a $4 billion missile defense bill, even though earlier today he denounced previous presidents who spent "$7 trillion in the Middle East."

Trump will spend the weekend at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida, according to CNN. He has spent 34 days at that estate this year — that's only a fraction of the 106 visits he's made to Trump properties in the first year of his presidency.

Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a staff writer for Salon. He holds an MA in History from Rutgers University-Newark and is ABD in his PhD program in History at Lehigh University. His work has appeared in Mic, Quartz and MSNBC.

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