Steven Mnuchin and Gary D. Cohn, both former Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (NYSE: GS) executives, were appointed by President Donald J. Trump to manage the overhauling of the United States tax system. A number of conservatives have expressed unease over their appointment. One apparent problem is that their focus has already gone awry.
Both Cohn and Mnuchin had second thoughts about the 15 percent rate proposal for corporate taxes. There is a strong possibility that the taxes will be set anywhere between 20 percent to 25 percent. There is also a strong possibility that the proposed ceiling of 35 percent being applicable on the highest personal tax rate on income to be fully halted. The top rate would remain at present 39.6 percent. Another query is also on everyone's minds- whether their finance experience is deep enough to succeed the Trump financial plan.
People who have had meetings with Cohn describe him as a person expert in handling data. He also has an excellent grasp of the US economy. However, many have said that he lacks the expertise to navigate the political landmine of Washington. Mnuchin, on his part, has explained to everyone that he has direct access to President Trump and also speaks for him. Mnuchin is also much more reserved and careful compared to Cohn. He also pays much more attention to what lawmakers say.
Lack of communication
Both Trump advisers try to avoid mistakes which torpedoed efforts to repeal and then replace the Obama-era Affordable Care Act (ACA) law. Both of them tries to communicate with all the important Congress members. However, even after all this tiptoeing, both Mnuchin and Cohn have yet to generate an exhaustive plan which the President expects from them. These cause worries among many Republicans.
Such concerns were spoken of by Senator Ron Wyden, a Democrat elected from Oregon. He said that both of them have wasted time when it comes to undertaking real tax reform. The Senator is Finance Committee's ranking member who has co-written two rewrite proposals put forward by the bipartisan committee. The latter is yet to interact on a one-on-one basis with either Cohn or Mnuchin.
Wall Street offered a subdued reaction when Hurricane Harvey destroyed the finances of millions of Americans and took a bad economic toll. However, history has shown that corporations could quickly overcome a number logistical challenges. It also helps that flooding is not covered under home insurance policies.