It is no secret President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump takes shot at new GOP candidate in Ohio over Cleveland nickname GOP political operatives indicted over illegal campaign contribution from Russian national in 2016 On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default MORE wants the Congress to send him a major piece of legislation that he can sign in 2017, fulfilling his promise to the American people to Make America Great Again from his first year in office.
The best opportunity for a legislative win is in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which would directly impact the middle class and small business owners, particularly black women entrepreneurs. President Trump will not sign any Tax Reform bill that does not provide tax relief for the middle class and reduce the corporate tax rate from 39 percent to 20 percent. The black community, specifically black women entrepreneurs, should celebrate policy goals like this.
Why focus on black women entrepreneurs? According to the 2017 State of Women-Owned Business Report commissioned by American Express:
“For the last 20 years, women of color have turned to entrepreneurship at an extraordinary rate. While the number of women-owned businesses grew 114 percent from 1997 to 2017, firms owned by women of color grew at more than four times that rate (467 percent)… An estimated 2,205,300 million African American women-owned firms employed 398,400 workers and generated $56 billion in revenues.”
The impact on this specific group of entrepreneurs is significant and worthy of pointing out because we want our small businesses to flourish, we want out small business owners to thrive and we want this economy to continue to grow.
During the 2016 campaign, then-candidate Trump famously asked a rhetorical question to the black community in a direct appeal for our votes: “What do you have to lose?” With this meaningful tax reform that has been one of President Trump’s top priorities he is now asking the community “What do you have to gain?”
With this tax cut the answer, for those in the middle class — the shrinking, struggling but strong middle class women entrepreneurs in the black community — is they have a lot to gain. For the millions of black women entrepreneurs who are contributing mightily to this economy, help is on the way. The Senate bill allows all pass-through businesses in every tax bracket the ability to deduct a portion of their business income, so more than 17.4 percent of their business income is totally tax-free.
According to The Council of Economic Advisors, middle-income families will also see higher household income — a minimum of $4,000 more in household income. That is real money for real people. For those working moms who are single or married and want the very best for their child, we can all thank champions in the Trump White House like Ivanka Trump who have been advocating for an increase in the child tax credit. In the Senate version, the tax credit is doubled from $1,000 annually per child to $2,000, and increased to $1,600 in the House version.
This tax reform legislation compliments recent GOP efforts to remove government barriers to positively impact entrepreneurial-minded Americans. Many conservative organizations and Republican elected officials work to remove big government regulations and fees creating a barrier to success for hair braiders and hair salon owners in the black community. All small business owners are unnecessarily punished by excessive big government regulations and face more than $11,000 in regulatory burdens per employee according to the National Association of Manufacturers.
Additionally, that same salon owner or independent contractor braiding hair for a living is often included in the 90 plus percent of Americans who need professional tax assistance to file their taxes to the government. Fortunately, both tax relief plans under consideration, simplifies the process and the code, eliminating that waste of time and treasure.
With the fact that the black community was generally better off financially (if you look at medium income) under the last GOP president than during the years of the most recent Democrat, one can be optimistic about the economic future with President Trump leading the effort to produce tax cuts. Remember, after the tax cuts of Presidents Kennedy, Reagan and George W. Bush, the economy created a combined 35 million jobs in the five years following each cut, based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics data. Removing these regulatory and tax burdens will drive the already record low black unemployment rate even lower because small businesses always drive the economy and are on the front lines for hiring in our communities.
Christmas should be a time for every American small business owner to have the peace of mind in knowing our government is working to Make America Great Again for him or her. For black women entrepreneurs, Congress needs to work in a bipartisan fashion to give President Trump what he has been asking for on behalf of the American people: long overdue tax relief.
Paris Dennard (@PARISDENNARD) is a communications strategist and GOP political commentator who has worked in the George W. Bush White House, the Republican National Committee (RNC), and most recently works on behalf of the nation’s public Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).