Trump calls Dems 'treasonous,' touts tax reform in Cincinnati
President Trump called Democrats “un-American” and “treasonous” Monday for failing to stand during his State of the Union address last week.
Speaking to a cheering crowd at a Cincinnati factory, Trump mocked Democrats for voting against his new tax law in December and for staying glued to their seats while he spoke of low unemployment rates and other economic successes.
He said Democrats would pay a price in the 2018 midterm elections and in the 2020 presidential election for not getting behind his policies. He called their behavior at the State of the Union un-American and “treasonous”
“Someone said ‘treasonous,'” he said. “Can you call that treason? Why not? They certainly didn’t seem to love our country very much.”
The remark came near the end of a speech intended to pitch the new tax law as a boon for the nation’s economy and American workers.
Standing next to a red, white and blue banner that proclaimed “Open for Business,” the president told the crowd at Sheffer Corp. that the tax law would increase wages and bring back millions of jobs.
“I wanted to give something very big back,” Trump told a cheering crowd at Sheffer Corp. in Blue Ash. “Your paychecks are going way up. Your taxes are going way down. America is once again open for business.”
Trump also pushed back against Democrats and economists who have said the improving economy has been recovering for years and is not suddenly on the rebound because of his presidency.
“I am non-braggadocious,” Trump said before citing his leadership as crucial to the nation’s economic success.
“It’s amazing what people with good ideas can do,” he said. “Wait til you see GDP over the next few years. Wait til you see what we’re going to do.”
Trump said he chose to visit Sheffer Corp because it’s a big beneficiary of the tax law he signed in December after Republicans passed it with little public debate and no Democratic support. The law slashed the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent and also reduced individual rates for most Americans.
The individual cuts, however, are temporary and will begin expiring in 2025, at which point they will return to previous levels and, in some cases, exceed them.
To drive home his point, Trump invited some factory employees to the stage to share stories about what the tax law means for them. One man said the $1,000 bonus he got this year, which his bosses credited to the tax law, will help him save money to buy a house and start a family.
Trump also blasted his political opponents — from Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi — and poked fun at the “fake news” reporters who were covering his speech in the back of the room.
The president was accompanied at the factory by Ohio Sen. Rob Portman and CEOs from several companies that have praised the tax plan. The list of corporate supporters includes Fifth Third Bank’s Greg Carmichael and Matt Schron from Jergens Inc.
Outside the factory and along his motorcade route to Blue Ash, the president was greeted by both supporters and protesters. Some cheered his arrival while others shouted, “Tax the rich, not the poor.”
The president also was traveling from Washington with Ohio Rep. Jim Renacci, a Trump supporter who’s running for Senate, and adviser Stephen Miller, one of the biggest immigration hard-liners in Trump’s White House.
Though a White House spokesman said the trip to Cincinnati “isn’t a political event,” Trump shouted Renacci’s name to the crowd that greeted him at Lunken. He then joined Renacci and the rest of his entourage on the road to Sheffer Corp. to tout the new tax law.
Polls show the nation has warmed to the tax law since Republicans approved it in December, but Trump still has some work to do. A majority of Americans remain skeptical the tax overhaul will help them or the broader economy, recent surveys say.
The effort to turn public opinion is crucial because Trump and the GOP have made the law the cornerstone of their campaign to hold on to power after the November midterm elections.
The president expects to find a friendly audience here, just as he did when he held rallies in Greater Cincinnati during and after the presidential campaign in 2016. He won Ohio by 8 percentage points.
Sheffer gave its employees $1,000 bonuses in December and company officials said the tax law made it possible. Other company bosses meeting with Trump Monday said they did the same.
Fifth Third, Jergens, and e-Cycle, whose CEO also will meet with Trump Monday, all said they gave employees $1,000 bonuses last year because of the tax law.
Trump is expected to deliver a speech at the plant sometime after the tour. First Lady Melania Trump plans to visit Children’s Hospital Medical Center.
The stakes are high for Trump and Republicans as they travel the country making their case for the tax law in advance of the midterm elections. The GOP has a razor-thin 51-49 majority in the Senate, and both parties are bracing for a dogfight for control of the House.
Republicans pushed the tax law through Congress with little public discussion and passed it with no Democratic support. The law slashes corporate tax rates from 35 percent to 21 percent and also cuts individual rates for most Americans.
The individual cuts, however, are temporary and will expire after 2025. By 2027, many individuals will pay slightly higher taxes than they would have under the previous tax law.
The benefits for individuals also are less predictable because savings will vary, in part because of a new $10,000 cap on deductions for state and local taxes.
For taxpayers at or near the median household income in Ohio and Hamilton County – roughly $50,000 – the tax savings this year could range from about $600 for a single person with no kids to about $1,400 for a married couple with two kids. Those estimates are based on a survey of several tax calculators now available to the public.
While Trump and the GOP call the new law a boon for taxpayers and the economy, opponents describe it as a giveaway to corporations that ultimately will be paid for by working-class Americans.
When Congress passed the law, many polls found support for it was below 30 percent. Lately, though, the news has been better for Trump and Republicans.
A Pew Survey in early January found 37 percent of Americans approve of the law, while 46 percent disapprove. A New York Times/SurveyMonkey poll found 46 percent approved and 49 percent disapproved.