President Donald Trump expressed a willingness to accept a higher corporate tax rate, a position his administration had previously rejected.
“Trump told reporters at the White House before a trip to New York City on Saturday that he would consider setting the corporate tax rate at 22 percent, compared to a 20 percent rate that he has pushed for with House and Senate Republicans during the fall,” the Associated Press reports.
The president spoke several hours after the Senate passed its version of the tax cut bill. Next the bill heads to a conference between the leaders of the House, which passed its own tax cut bill in November, and Senate leaders to work out the differences between the two bills. Trump predicted that “something beautiful is going to come out of that mixer.”
Trump also said that corporate taxes could come “all the way down from 35 to 20. It could be 22 when it comes out, but it could also be 20. We’ll see what ultimately comes out.”
A higher corporate rate could allow for deeper cuts elsewhere, including an expansion of the child tax credit or lower individual rates. Alternatively, the additional revenues could be used to restore tax breaks the bills would eliminate, particularly the deducation for state and local taxes.
Trump’s words appear to mark a departure from its earlier position. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in September that the 20 percent rate was “not negotiable.”