It may be hard for Congress not to get distracted by the controversies in Washington, but if the Republicans don’t buckle down and focus on tax reform, they may no longer hold the majority in 2018 to further their agenda. This would be a monumental and historic waste of the control handed to them by voters, that put them there based on their promises to jump-start the economy and achieve tax reform. Voters elected them because they believe their plans will grow the economy, create jobs, and improve standard of living for middle-class families. It would be a colossal mistake to throw this opportunity away because they didn’t do their job — which is to legislate.
The economy is suffering. Businesses, large and small, are operating in uncertainty. Thus, they’re not unleashing their potential to hire more people, raise wages, and invest in and expand their products and services. Take a look at the latest jobs report – there were 138,000 jobs added in May, compared to the expected number of 185,000. Combined with a disappointing 1.2% annual growth in the first quarter, the U.S. economy continues to experience sluggish growth and a dip in hiring – neither are indications that the economy is headed in a positive direction.
It may be still early in President Trump’s presidency, but make no mistake, the lack of a clear vision and timeline for economic policies, especially tax reform, is injecting damaging doubt and uncertainty into the economy, as the latest jobs numbers show. Congress has got to move on from the distractions at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, get to work at the Capitol and push tax reform legislation to the floor for a vote.
Congress should be looking at the latest jobs report just the same, as it reflects their (lacking) performance. They ought to wake up and realize that if they don’t get tax reform done this year, the economy, and their chance of retaining control of Congress after 2018, will sink. Small businesses and the American people need and deserve long-awaited tax reform. According to the Tax Foundation, tax reform could create 1,687,000 new jobs and raise annual incomes by nearly $5,000 for middle-income families. Their patience is running thin for what could be.
Now is the time — there’s no other time – for Congress and the Administration to coalesce on a tax reform plan and work together to get it passed. There may not be another chance.