President Donald Trump said he prefers the term “mirror tax” compared to “border adjustment,” a controversial provision of his tax reform bill.
Trump told Fox News that he does not want to talk about whether he supports the border adjustment tax, explaining that he prefers other terms for the border tax. President Trump said, “[But] when I hear border adjustment, ‘adjustment’ means we lose.”
Trump said, “I love the idea of a reciprocal … or matching tax or a mirror tax … The funny thing is nobody gets angry when you say, ‘reciprocal tax.” He continued, “When you say, ‘I’m going to charge you a 10 percent or 20 percent border tax’ everyone goes crazy because they like free trade,” he said. “They don’t say the other countries are charging you much more than that.”
The border-adjustment tax (BAT) would exempt exports from taxation while taxing imports on supplies and consumer goods at 20 percent tax. The proposed tax garnered opposition from conservatives, arguing that the tax would increase the price of consumer goods, while House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX) claims that the tax will encourage domestic manufacturing and job creation.
Trump said that the tax could be used to balance out unfair foreign trade practices. President Trump explained, “There has to be a certain reciprocal nature to it.” He continued, “The other countries, if they’re charging you a 50 percent tax, you say: ‘O.K., whatever you charge, we’re charging.'”