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President Trump kicked off his push for tax reform with a speech at a manufacturing facility in Springfield, Mo., making the case that a "pro-growth, pro-jobs, pro-worker, and pro-American" tax code is the key to revitalizing Main Street businesses, bringing back jobs and keeping the United States competitive in the global economy. The event, attended by local small business leaders including more than a dozen members of ABC’s Heart of America Chapter, marked the opening salvo in the White House’s effort to sell a highly anticipated tax bill that sits atop the GOP’s fall legislative agenda.

While short on specifics—the precise text of the bill has been a closely guarded secret by the so-called “Big Six” principals responsible for the overhaul—the speech made a strong case for the urgency of reform and the imperative of fixing a broken tax code riddled with loopholes that help the rich and connected while holding back middle-class families and small businesses.

In today’s speech, President Trump committed to "bring back main street by reducing the crushing tax burden on our companies and on our workers.” He continued by insisting that the reformed tax code be “simple, fair and easy to understand.”:
“That means getting rid of loopholes and complexity that primarily benefit the wealthiest Americans and special interest… [Tax reform] must benefit loyal hardworking Americans and their families.”

The president’s words ring particularly true to merit shop contractors. A capital-intensive, low-margin, domestically oriented business comprised largely of small, family-owned and closely held firms, construction doesn’t lend itself to the provisions that are exploited by large, multinational corporations. According to analysis by the U.S. Department of Treasury, the construction industry pays the highest effective tax rate of any sector of the nation’s economy.

ABC National staff is highly engaged in the emerging tax reform discussion on Capitol Hill and will continue to update Newsline readers as the process moves forward.