Donald Trump sought to clarify his position on tax cuts Monday after making comments that raised questions about where he stands on the issue.
In interviews over the weekend, Trump had suggested that lowering tax rates for the wealthy would be negotiable if he were elected president, seemingly defying the GOP’s long-held position that rates should be lowered for everyone.
He moved to clarify his comments Monday morning, telling CNN that high-earners would still get tax cuts if he won the White House. He said that wealthy people might have to pay a higher rate than the 25 percent rate specified in his tax plan but that they would still pay less than they are now.
Later in the day, Trump issued a tweet that a campaign spokesperson said was “in response to the misrepresentation of his statements.”
“I am lowering taxes far more than any other candidate,” Trump tweeted. “Any negotiated increase by Congress to my proposal would still be lower than current!”
The questions about Trump’s tax-cutting bona fides are emerging just days before he comes to Capitol Hill for a crucial visit with Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and other congressional Republicans.
Tax cuts is “one of the holy grail of issues that all Republicans are united on,” said Republican strategist Ford O’Connell. He estimated that Trump needs about 90 percent to 92 percent of registered Republicans to vote for him in the general election in order to win.