Thursday on his nationally syndicated radio show, conservative talker Rush Limbaugh said President Donald Trump’s newly unveiled tax policy was “a pure populist approach.”
Partial transcript as follows:
LIMBAUGH: All of this is smoke and mirrors. All of this is designed to get votes. Here’s Trump, justifying the fact that there will not be much, if any, relief at all in the top tax rates.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
TRUMP: Our framework includes an explicit commitment that tax reform will protect low-income and middle-income households, not the wealthy and well-connected. They can call me all they want, it isn’t going to help. I’m doing the right thing, and it’s not good for me. Believe me. But what is good for me not only as president and legacy—what is good for me is if everything takes off like a rocket ship like it should have for 20 years. That’s good for me. That is good for everyone.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
LIMBAUGH: Right there is populism. That is pure private, some might say it’s liberal—it’s a derivative of Democrat party class warfare rhetoric. Our framework includes our explicit commitment that tax reform protects low-income and middle-income households, not the wealthy and the well-connected. They can call me all they want, it isn’t going to help.
See, if we continue to demonize high earners and high taxpayers. We demonized them. Somehow it’s not fair, so we demonized them and we punish them. When everybody else is getting a tax break, they don’t, and is called fairness. What it really is—it is how you get votes in the middle class. This is a pure populist approach. This is not a conservative approach to tax reform whatsoever. On this one, President Trump is who he is. He is a full-fledged nationalist populist in this tax policy. That’s fine. That is who he is. I’ve told everybody he is not a conservative. He is not an ideologue. And he thinks there is great political value in telling the country that all well-connected and the rich aren’t going to get anything. He is of the belief that a lot of people react favorably to the news that the rich are going to get soaked or that the rich are not going to benefit when everybody else does. That doesn’t promote growth.