Trump torpedoes Ryan’s tax plan: It’s ‘too complicated’

House Speaker Paul Ryan

Paul Ryan turned a blind eye to every disqualifying utterance Donald Trump made during the 2016 cycle, instead choosing to tout his “Better Way” plan as if it absolved him Trump’s sins. His assumption was clearly that if Trump won, congressional Republicans would have a rubber stamp for their policies in the White House. For that, who cares that Trump bragged about sexually assaulting women, is a serial liar, and exhibits no grounding in reality? 

Well, now a little sweet justice is coming right back at Ryan, who spent part of last week trying to gain the incoming pr*sident’s support for his tax plan. Rachel Bade writes:

For more than two hours, the speaker laid out his alternative to Trump’s plan to slap tariffs on companies that move jobs overseas, which he believed would encourage companies to stay in the U.S.

But not even a week later, Trump dismissed Ryan’s idea, calling it “too complicated.” And now Ryan is left with a potential trillion-dollars hole in his tax plan. […]

His most recent dismissal of a cornerstone of Ryan’s tax plan is perhaps the most surprising yet, given the impossible position it puts the speaker in. He and Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) had spent months crafting their so-called “border adjustable” business tax on imports, which they say would bring in $1 trillion over a decade. The duo needs that money to finance tax cuts for Americans and U.S. businesses. Remove it from the equation and it’s hard to see how tax reform — a top priority for Trump and Ryan — happens.

Doh! Who woulda thunk that a spoiled billionaire who demonstrated no interest whatsoever in policy making might find tax legislation “too complicated”?

This isn’t the first time Trump has blundered his way into scuttling GOP plans on the Hill and it won’t be the last. Last week, Trump promised the impossible on healthcare: immediate repeal AND replace. This past weekend, he promised the even more impossible: “insurance for everybody.” 

Trump should get right on with tweeting more of his policy prescriptions on taxes and health care.

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