Jan 26, 2017

Rebranding the GOP's $1T border tax

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

At the closed door tax reform meeting with Republican House and Senate members, Ways and Means chair Kevin Brady made a forceful pitch for the border adjustment tax, which boosts taxes on imports and reduces them on exports.

The tax could raise $1 trillion and help pay for Trump's expensive promises, and Republican leadership believes tax reform depends on it. Some members don't like it, and made that clear through their questioning at the GOP retreat in Philadelphia Wednesday afternoon. But, according to one member, a number of advocates are getting wise to the fact that the tax needs to be rebranded.

"Trump is all about the branding," a senior House member told Axios. This member now calls it a border adjustment "fee." Others, he says, are calling it a "mechanism." Brady himself, as a senior House aide notes, declines to call it border adjustment, rather saying this provision will end the "Made in America" tax.

Why this matters: Trump doesn't like the sound of a border adjustment tax. He told the Wall Street Journal it sounded too complicated, and though he walked that back when he spoke to Axios, he's still not comfortable selling the idea. Steve Bannon likes the concept, he believes it's an American nationalist tax. But it might take a rebranding project to get it through.

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Updated 22 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Updates: George Floyd protests continue for 8th day

Police officers wearing riot gear push back demonstrators outside of the White House on Monday. Photo: Jose Luis Magana/AFP via Getty Images

Protests over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black people continued Tuesday across the U.S. for the eighth consecutive day, prompting a federal response from the National Guard, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection.

The latest: The National Park Service said in a statement Tuesday that while it "is committed to the peaceful expression of First Amendment rights," it "cannot tolerate violence to citizens or officers or damage to our nation’s resources that we are entrusted to protect."

American carnage

Protesters race up a hill to avoid tear gas in Philadelphia, June 1. Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images

The list of victims has swiftly grown since George Floyd died in police custody just eight days ago.

The big picture: Protests against police brutality have turned into a showcase of police brutality, with tear gas and rubber bullets deployed against crowds. The police have the arsenals at their disposal, but we're also seeing law enforcement officers becoming targets.

McConnell blocks resolution condemning Trump's actions against peaceful protesters

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) blocked a resolution introduced by Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday that would have condemned the use of tear gas and rubber bullets against peaceful protesters outside the White House on Monday in order to allow President Trump to walk to St. John's Church.

What they're saying: "Justice for black Americans in the face of unjust violence, and peace for our country in the face of looting, riots, and domestic terror. Those are the two issues Americans want addressed," McConnell said on the Senate floor.