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Vice president tells state chamber ‘war on coal is over’


The Herald-Dispatch

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W.Va. — Vice President Mike Pence came to the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce’s 81st Annual Meeting and Business Summit at The Greenbrier and declared, “The war on coal is over.”

Pence says President Donald Trump has rolled back many federal regulations that hurt West Virginia’s coal industry.

“President Trump has signed more laws to cut through federal red tape than any president in American history,” Pence said Wednesday. “He ordered every federal agency to find two regulations to get rid of before passing any new regulations. To fuel the great revival of American industry, President Trump has been unleashing American energy. We are already seeing results. Coal is up 19 percent over last year.”

Pence added that American businesses have created 1 million jobs since January and unemployment rates are at their lowest levels in 16 years.

“We had 3 percent growth in the second quarter, which will mean 12 million new jobs,” he said.

Pence said on Wednesday that the president has also called on Congress to fundamentally reform the nation’s tax code for the first time in more than 30 years by passing a historic tax cut.

“The president said these tax cuts are pro-growth, pro-jobs, pro-worker and pro-American,” the vice president said.

Pence said when you cut taxes you spark growth, increase incomes and create a thriving middle class.

“John F. Kennedy proved it, Ronald Reagan proved it and President Donald Trump will prove it once again,” he said. “The bigger the cut, the bigger the growth.”

Pence says the current tax code is stuck in the past.

“It burdens American families and actually hinders economic growth,” he said. “The current tax code is 10 times the length of the Bible, but with none of the good news.”

Pence says the current tax code is too complex and costs Americans too much.

“Today taxpayers spend over 6 billion hours a year doing their taxes,” Pence said. “More than 90 percent of small businesses have to pay someone to do their taxes for them. It’s nearly impossible to do it on your own. It shouldn’t take a lawyer or an accountant to figure out how much tax you owe the federal government.”

Pence says the tax code costs the American economy $262 billion each year.

“That’s $1,000 for every man, woman and child in America,” he said. “Tax rates have been rising, too, especially on job creators. As you well know, American businesses face a staggering 39 percent, the third highest in the industrialized world … roughly 60 percent higher than our competitors around the planet.”

Pence said Trump’s tax plan is based on four principles.

“We need a tax code that is fair, simple and easy to understand. Second, we need a tax code that makes America competitive again and creates jobs and gives American workers the raise they deserve,” Pence explained. “Third, we need to cut taxes across the board for middle-class families, and finally, we need to cut taxes so that businesses can bring back the trillions of dollars that are trapped overseas to avoid unfair taxes and bring them here to create jobs in America.”

Pence said Americans have always known how to spend their money better than some bureaucrat in Washington, D.C., so the plan would start by cutting marginal rates.

“We want to give working families the opportunity to keep more of their hard-earned dollars,” he said. “We are going to simplify the tax code so Americans can file their taxes by themselves on a single sheet of paper. We are going to make the tax code flatter and fairer for everyone.”

Pence says the president’s plan also calls for a cut in the corporate tax rate.

“So American companies can compete against anyone, anytime, anywhere in the world,” he said. “This will spur American investment for many years to come. Tax cuts mean more jobs and a raise for American workers. President Trump’s tax cut plan will usher in a new era of growth for America.”

Pence called on West Virginia’s senators and congressmen to support the plan.

“America needs this and West Virginia needs this,” he said.

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