Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney insisted Sunday that President Trump is "absolutely, deadly serious" about levying a 5 percent tariff on all Mexican imports next week, rising monthly until they hit 25 percent, if Mexico doesn't stop migrants from crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. That's great news for fans of regressive taxation.
Trump's already implemented tariffs amount to $69 billion in revenue, or 0.32 percent of U.S. gross domestic product, Courtenay Brown says at Axios, citing a Tax Foundation model, and a 5 percent tax on Mexican imports would raise that to about 0.40 percent of GDP. That's more than President Bill Clinton's 1993 tax increase, equal to 0.36 percent of GDP, "and just shy of George H.W. Bush’s increase in 1990, which amounted to 0.41 percent of GDP after year 1," Brown figures. If Trump's tariffs rise to 25 percent on Mexican and Chinese imports, that would amount to 1.45 percent of GDP, or effectively the biggest tax hike since 1968.