President Trump's top economic adviser on Thursday insisted wealthy Americans would not see taxes drop under Trump's plan, despite provisions repealing the estate tax and eliminating the alternative minimum tax, both of which could help wealthier households.
National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn told ABC's "Good Morning America" that the Trump administration's tax plan benefits middle-class Americans instead of the wealthy.
"When we've looked at the tax plan, and we've looked at what it does for Americans, we are very confident that Americans are getting a great deal here," Cohn said Thursday. "We have also said that wealthy Americans are not getting a tax cut."
The Trump plan would lower the top tax rate from 39.6 percent to 35 percent, though it also leaves open the possibility of a higher rate for the super-wealthy.
Trump has also talked about eliminating tax breaks that could benefit the rich, though the administration has yet to fill in some of those details. An effort to eliminate tax breaks within the system would set off a huge lobbying fight that will make it more difficult for Congress to finish tax reform.
The elimination of the estate tax could be a boon for super-wealthy families. It also includes a reduction in the tax rate for "pass-through" businesses that could help small businesses, but also law firms, investment partnerships and real estate businesses.
Ending the alternative minimum tax could also help some wealthier households.
Democrats have criticized Trump's plan for tax reform, unveiled Wednesday, as a transfer of wealth to the richest Americans.
“This is wealth fare. Wealth fare, helping those of great wealth with more tax breaks,” said Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerPricing methane and carbon emissions will help US meet the climate moment Democratic senator: Methane fee could be 'in jeopardy' Manchin jokes on party affiliation: 'I don't know where in the hell I belong' MORE (D-N.Y.).
Cohn rejected that criticism on Thursday, telling ABC that "everyday hardworking Americans" would benefit most under Trump's proposal.
"We have designed a tax plan that is stimulant to the economy, we are giving tax cuts to middle- and lower-income Americans," Cohn said. "We want everyday hardworking Americans to have more money in their paycheck."
"Will the wealthy get a tax cut or not?" asked host George Stephanopoulos.
"The wealthy are not getting a tax cut under our plan," Cohn responded.
Trump assured Americans that his tax plan would be "not good for me" at a rally alongside Sen. Joe DonnellyJoseph (Joe) Simon DonnellyBiden to have audience with pope, attend G20 summit Biden taps former Indiana Sen. Donnelly as ambassador to Vatican Republicans may regret restricting reproductive rights MORE (D-Ind.) on Tuesday.
“I’m doing the right thing, and it’s not good for me, believe me,” Trump said at the event in Indiana.
“This is the right tax cut and this is the right time. Democrats and Republicans in Congress should come together finally to deliver this giant win for the American people and begin [a] middle-class miracle.”
Trump's tax plan would collapse a system of seven individual income tax brackets into three with rates of of 12, 25 and 35 percent.