Krugman: Trump is 'right' on taxes, economics
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Paul Krugman, the liberal economist and New York Times columnist, said Monday that leading Republican presidential candidate Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse expected to vote on omnibus Thursday afternoon House passes 'right to try' drug bill Spending bill rejects Trump’s proposed EPA cut MORE is right on taxation and economic policy.

In a Times op-ed, Krugman wrote that Trump is correct to embrace a tax hike on the rich and speak out in favor of universal healthcare. He added that conservatives — who are now slamming Trump’s proposals — were wrong to warn about the ill economic impacts of those policies ahead of the 2012 election.

“The economy has nonetheless done far better than should have been possible if conservative orthodoxy had any truth to it,” Krugman wrote. “And now Mr. Trump is being accused of heresy for not accepting that failed orthodoxy?”

Trump said last month that he would be willing to raise taxes on high-income individuals, including hedge fund managers, if it meant giving tax breaks to the middle class and corporations inclined to move their headquarters overseas.

He has previously endorsed universal healthcare in the United States, though he has joined other Republicans in slamming the Affordable Care Act.

GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush, the former Florida governor who has seen his front-runner status slip away as Trump has surged, has committed to attacking Trump in the lead-up to primary season.

But Krugman wrote that Trump’s economic policies are more sound than those Bush and others have pushed, and he noted that Trump’s policies have resonated with Republican primary voters.

Bush’s “actual economic platform, which relies on the magic of tax cuts to deliver a doubling of America’s growth rate, is pure supply-side voodoo,” Krugman wrote.

“And here’s what’s interesting: all indications are that Mr. Bush’s attacks on Mr. Trump are falling flat, because the Republican base doesn’t actually share the Republican establishment’s economic delusions,” he added.

None of that is to say Krugman will begin backing Trump’s campaign.

“So am I saying that Mr. Trump is better and more serious than he’s given credit for being? Not at all — he is exactly the ignorant blowhard he seems to be,” he wrote.

“It’s when it comes to his rivals that appearances can be deceiving. Some of them may come across as reasonable and thoughtful, but in reality they are anything but.”