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More tariffs, fewer taxes and a proposal to attract working voters: Results of the meeting between Trump and Republican legislators

The former president proposes eliminating the tip tax to gain the support of the working class in key states.

Former US President and 2024 presidential hopeful Donald Trump leaves after speaking at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) meeting on February 24, 2024, in National Harbor, Maryland. (Photo by Mandel NGAN / AFP)


This Thursday Former President Donald Trump held an important closed-door meeting with Republican legislators where he smoothed things over between different members of the party and proposed several ideas to win the upcoming general election.

One of the most striking proposals was to reduce the US income tax, which revenue will be replaced by an increase in import tariffs.

The comments from the former president, who during his first term defended tariffs as a foreign policy tool to curb unfair competition from China, show that he is considering a more protectionist trade agenda if he manages to win the November elections.

However, perhaps the most important idea addressed at the meeting was eliminating one tax specifically to appeal to working-class voters in some key states.

According to the statements of different senators, Trump convinced the representatives and senators to eliminate tip tax, a proposal that could attract the vote of waitresses and other service industry workers in key states such as Nevada, which could tip the balance in favor of the Republican candidate.

According to Fox News Digital, the proposal took center stage during the meeting and Trump managed to convince legislators of its viability.

"What I think President Trump did sell us all on is don't tax," said Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., who was initially skeptical of the proposal. “It's actually a darn good idea (…) One of the reasons he's doing this [is] because the Biden administration is taking on onerous reporting regulations. They want to make sure they get every tax, every little penny of tips. And this [is] just a total break from that.”

Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., also gave the proposal a thumbs-up: “He thinks it's a great example of how working people in this economy just can't get ahead.”

Former President Trump had already presented this idea at a rally in Nevada, a state that he lost in 2020 to Biden by less than three points. Polls now show the former Republican president is ahead of the Democratic incumbent in Nevada by up to five points. For electoral experts, if Trump wants to reach the White House again, he needs to win back states like Nevada, Arizona and Georgia.

Trump also reportedly told senators that the idea to eliminate the tip tax came from a waitress who explained how difficult it had become for her and her colleagues to file their tax returns.

"I think it's a very symbolic group of folks, and some of the waitresses there in Vegas felt like they're being targeted by the IRS. And, boy, it is just really tough out there from an inflation standpoint," Senator Roger Marshall, Republican of Kansas, told Fox News.

In addition to a variety of economic and popular proposals, the former president also sought to smooth over differences in the meeting to maintain the unity of the Republicans until November.

According to Reuters, Trump shook hands with Senator Mitch McConnell despite their complex relationship over the past few years, especially after the events of January 6 at the Capitol.

He also urged Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene to “be nice” to House Speaker Mike Johnson after her failed attempt to remove him from his leadership position.

Finally, Trump also recommended that Republicans not push forward a national ban on abortion in the coming months and, in addition, asked lawmakers to put aside all internal party disputes that contribute to a reprehensible climate of chaos in the House.