As is often the case with Republican tax plans, what is advertised as a tax break for "small business" is actually a proposal to create a tax preference for wealthy people like Donald Trump. This could include charging them a higher tax rate, but no final decisions have been made.
Trump spoke as House Republicans on the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee huddled behind closed doors to discuss the plan.
Trump's tax plan includes a tax reform measure many Republicans have wanted to repeal for a long time: the estate tax. Their top legislative priority, overhauling the USA healthcare system, collapsed again in the Senate on Tuesday.
By refusing to specify on Wednesday which tax breaks could be jettisoned, GOP leaders make a calculated effort to try to postpone any backlash while they try to build a coalition.
The White House said that, under the proposal, typical middle-class families would have less income subject to federal tax. The standard deductions for married families and individuals would double, but the personal exemption would disappear, offsetting part of that gain.
At the core of the GOP plan: slashing both corporate and individual tax rates.
Tax brackets will be whittled down to just three: 12, 25 and 35 percent, with room to add a fourth higher rate if necessary to ensure the wealthy pay their fair share. But its provisions for individual taxes may hit closer to home for many Americans. The summary says "typical families existing in the (current) 10% bracket are expected to be better off under the framework due to the larger standard deduction, larger child tax credit and additional tax relief that will be included during the committee process".
The Democratic leader added that the proposal represents a "billionaires-first tax plan that treats the middle class as an afterthought".
Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, R-Wis., speaks as the White House and congressional Republicans are finalizing a tax plan, at Republican National Committee Headquarters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2017.
Repealing it would increase federal revenue by $1.3 trillion over the decade, according to the Tax Policy Center.
International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde warned Wednesday that the USA will fall short of its ambitious economic growth goals unless it can accelerate promised policy changes, including tax reform. They represent about 95% of all U.S. businesses.
Progressive politicians like Bernie Sanders have also proposed to eliminate the AMT, but replacing it with a flat tax on the wealthy of around 28 percent.
Republicans in Congress have fought for years to balance the budget over 10 years and eliminate the deficit, but they have pivoted away from that demand during the tax talks because many of them think that tax cuts will deliver a needed jolt to the economy. They did not target the popular ones for mortgage interest and charitable giving, but called for scrapping the one for state and local tax payments.
And it will seek, as widely expected, to simplify the tax system by reducing the number of income tax brackets from seven to three. And in 2015, a Pew survey revealed that 60 percent believe that "some wealthy people" and "some corporations" are shirking their tax responsibility.