Trump should facilitate job creation with free market solutions

President-elect Trump has pledged to create 25 million new jobs when he assumes office on Jan. 20. From tax cuts to undoing regulations, Trump contrasted and beat his challenger Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Third vaccine candidate with 90% efficacy Biden won — so why did Trump's popularity hit its highest point ever? The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the UAE Embassy in Washington, DC - Calls mount to start transition as Biden readies Cabinet picks MORE by promising not to perpetuate the status quo.

Trump’s predecessors in both parties enabled government to interfere with private enterprise. If Trump truly wants to drain the swamp, his incoming administration cannot pick economic winners and losers. It must create a pro-business climate virtually free of regulations and burdensome taxes to see true economic prosperity.

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Trump’s team must first overhaul burdensome regulations that prevent businesses from starting. This can be witnessed by reforming our draconian tax code and by pursuing occupational licensing reform.

Under Trump’s proposed tax plan, seven income brackets will be consolidated into three income brackets. This is to be supplemented by abolishing the death tax and lowering corporate tax rates from 35 percent to 15 percent—making it easier for businesses to get off the ground.

Occupational licensure reform could similarly remove unnecessary regulations preventing skilled American workers from opening their own floral shops or hair salons. Occupational licensing in its current state harms both consumers and skilled workers with higher costs and barriers to entry, respectively. If Trump wants to truly stand for the little guy, his economic policies should encourage more skilled workers, not fewer.

Moreover, Trump and his economic team should also get government off the backs of small businesses. Small businesses are the bedrock of this nation. They comprise over half of the private-sector economy. As of March 2016, there were 28.8 million small businesses and 56.8 million small business employees across the country. Regulations and roadblocks to launching small businesses should be removed. The countless products and services these shops provide play an insurmountable role in our economy. Trump’s selection of Linda McMahonLinda Marie McMahonApril's dumbest and most dangerous coronavirus declarations Trump convenes sports commissioners in hopes of filling stadiums Senate confirms Trump pick for small business chief MORE to head up the Small Business Administration seems like a good first step in the right direction. 

Trump’s administration should refrain from imposing onerous federal regulations on emerging enterprises like Uber, AirBnB, and Lyft. These emerging enterprises give their employees work hour flexibility and decent pay to support their livelihoods. These innovations and their services enable Americans to move up the economic ladder in ways the government cannot.

Instead of forcing these companies to unionize, to pay unsustainable operating costs in major cities, or banning them altogether, the president-elect and his economic team should not co-opt or discourage these emerging enterprises. Trump’s meeting with prominent Silicon Valley executives earlier this week was promising in this respect. 

These are measures that would align with public opinion. Contrary to popular belief, a majority of Americans have faith in free enterprise. A Gallup poll released in May 2016 revealed that 60 percent of respondents have a positive view of “capitalism,” while 85 percent of those polled have a positive view of “free enterprise.” Those results are probably due to the prevalence of crony capitalism under President Obama’s tenure with deals like Solyndra and his signature healthcare law. Given this, Trump and his team have a mandate to promote business-friendly policies that facilitate more opportunities for Americans in all income brackets.

“If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.,” In 2012 Obama famously remarked in 2012. Trump thankfully showed a different way forward over the course of his rhetoric on the campaign trail, and promised in September to be “greatest president for jobs that God ever created.” 

From a free market perspective, the Trump administration can’t be responsible for creating jobs or giving businesses subsidies to incentivize them to stay in this country. The government’s sole responsibility in job creation is to create a business climate that’s free of burdensome regulations and marked by few barriers to entry.

But Trump can still make good on his promise by pursuing free market solutions. Let’s hope Trump uses his mandate to oversee an economy where all Americans are afforded equal opportunities to succeed.

Gabriella Hoffman (@Gabby_Hoffman) is a conservative media strategist and consultant based in Northern Virginia.


The views expressed by contributors are their own and are not the views of The Hill.