President Donald Trump must deliver on tax and health care reform or risk losing the House of Representatives in 2018, multimillionaire Steve Forbes told a Las Vegas audience.
The Democratic Party voter base has been roused up by its November beating and will come out in large numbers for the interim elections in 2018, Forbes said Monday at opening ceremonies for the Money Show at Caesars Palace. The Republican voter base, on the other hand, is demoralized by Trump’s poor start, he added.
Forbes criticized his party for starting its reform agenda with the more-complicated health care reform rather than with corporate and individual tax cuts, which he believed could quickly boost investment and economic growth.
“The prospect of a political hanging I think will eventually focus the Republican’s minds wonderfully,” Forbes told several hundred people at the show. “If they don’t get this economy really revved up, they are going to face the political gallows next year.”
Forbes, owner of a publishing house, ran in the Republican presidential primaries in 1996 and 2000, promoting a flat tax.
Mark Skousen, a Republican economist who shared the stage earlier in the day with Forbes, warned that Trump’s reform agenda would be derailed if he lost one of the houses. Skousen pointed out that former President Barack Obama struggled to get legislation through a Republican-controlled Senate in his second term.
American voters will likely forgive Trump and the Republican Party of mistakes by election time if he cuts taxes, Forbes said. Former U.S. President Bill Clinton was able to survive impeachment in part because Americans felt financially better off during his tenure, Forbes told the audience.
“When you have a vibrant economy, it covers a multitude of sins,” said Forbes.
He slammed Trump and the Republicans for supporting a border adjustment tax, or so-called BAT tax, calling it a ”crazy” idea. Forbes said it would harm working-class American families by driving up the cost of a car by $2,500, gasoline by 30 cents a gallon and lead to an increase in many basic goods.
Forbes is one of many speakers at the MoneyShow, which runs through Thursday. It is free and open to the public.
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MoneyShow spans wide variety of topics
The MoneyShow, founded in 1981, hosts dozens of educational and company-sponsored seminars on a range of financial topics, including stocks, currencies, technical analysis, exchange traded funds, options and strategies. Some speakers will be offering their best stock picks for 2017.
About 4,000 people, including many retirees from surrounding states, are attending this week’s events, said show president Aaron West. The typical attendee has a net worth of about $1.5 million, including the value of their home, said West.
The MoneyShow for investors is held four times a year in the U.S., including Orlando, San Francisco, Dallas and Las Vegas.