Gary Cohn is Trump’s chief economic adviser but he’s not always eager to talk tax reform with the commander-in-chief.
During an interview Wednesday on CNN, Senator Tom Carper (D-DE) said while in a meeting with Cohn, White House director of legislative affairs Marc Short, and a number of moderate Democrats to talk tax reform, Cohn took a call from President Trump. That’s when Carper suggested that Cohn fake a bad connection so they could resume a serious discussion.
Carper, a member of the Senate Finance Committee, suggested Cohn say, “Mr. President, you’re brilliant! But we’re losing contact, and I think we’re going to lose you now, so good-bye.”
And that’s what Cohn did.
It’s not hard to understand why Cohn and the rest wouldn’t want Trump to interrupt their meeting, he has a proven track record of not understand the contents of the bill. He’s stated repeatedly this plan is a middle class tax cut that he won’t benefit from. This, of course, is false.
After the call Carper said they were able to “go back to having the kind of conversation [they] needed to,” where the White House heard the concerns of moderate Democrats who may be persuaded to vote for a bipartisan tax plan.
The White House needs all the help it can get when it comes to votes in the Senate. They can only afford to lose two votes and Senators like Susan Collins (R-ME) and Bob Corker (R-TN) have expressed concerns over the effects of repealing the individual mandate and a ballooning deficit, respectively. The Senate is scheduled to vote on the tax plan just after Thanksgiving.