WASHINGTON – US President Donald Trump finally signed Friday the ambitious tax reform bill that includes significant tax cuts for corporations and wealthy individuals, and which Republicans tout as the great legislative victory of his first year in office.
In a White House ceremony before leaving on his Christmas vacation in Florida, the president signed the bill passed this week in Congress with the backing of Republican majorities in the House of Representatives and the Senate, following weeks of intense negotiations.
Trump expressed his gratitude to congressional leaders for approving “the largest tax cut in the history of our country.”
The legislation includes, among other provisions, the lowering of the tax rate paid by corporations from 35 percent to 21 percent.
This is a “bill for the middle class and a bill for jobs,” Trump told reporters, adding that companies “are literally going wild” over their new tax breaks.
He also said he signed the bill into law before leaving on vacation to keep his promise to do so before Christmas, as he said he would late last summer.
The slashing of taxes is calculated to add $1.5 billion to the nation’s deficit, currently at around $20 billion, over the next 10 years, according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), something the president believes will be balanced by the boost it will give to the economy.
Trump began Friday his Christmas vacation at Mar-a-Lago, his private residence in Florida, now being called the Winter White House, together with his wife Melania and his family, before returning to Washington at the start of 2018.