White House economic adviser Gary Cohn said the Trump administration is still committed to passing a plan to overhaul the tax code this year, while acknowledging it may not be completed by August.
Cohn said during a Bloomberg Television interview on Friday that taxes are his top priority, adding that the administration is spending an “enormous amount” of time on the topic.
“I don’t know if it’s August or not,” Cohn said. “Getting it done well and getting it done right is more important than getting it done soon.”
More than eight weeks ago, President Donald Trump said he would be releasing a “phenomenal” tax plan within two or three weeks. But there’s no sign of a plan yet, and mixed signals from the White House have imperiled Republican promises of speedy action. The administration hasn’t yet publicly answered the most basic questions about what a possible tax reform plan would look like, including whether tax changes would be permanent or temporary.
House Republicans have struggled to gain support from their members for a tax blueprint released last June. The plan includes a controversial border-adjusted tax that would replace the 35 percent corporate tax rate with a 20 percent rate applied to companies’ domestic sales and imported goods.
Cohn, head of the National Economic Council, signaled during the interview that the administration would be attempting to work with Congress on “one cohesive plan.” He said there would be “a lot of important meetings” about taxes when Congress returns in late-April from its recess.
Trump’s aides have sought to emphasize that the administration is driving the train on a tax code rewrite, unlike the failed attempt to repeal Obamacare, where House Speaker Paul Ryan took the lead.