Trump’s tax cuts weren’t a handout to the rich. My small business is thriving with them

The streak continues.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics has announced that the unemployment rate fell to 3.7 percent, the sixth straight month that the national unemployment rate has been below 4 percent. This is the longest such streak in 50 years. At this unemployment rate, virtually any American who wants a job can find one.

Even those who haven’t been looking for work are coming off the labor market sidelines to take advantage of this historic opportunity. Since November 2016, prime-age employment has grown by about 500,000 more than the long-run trend indicated.

Even with this influx of mostly less-skilled employees into the labor market, wages are rising. According to today’s report, average weekly wages grew by 3.3 percent over the last year. After tax wages are growing even faster thanks to the tax cuts that took effect this year.

In Arizona, the unemployment rate is just 4.6 percent. It is the fourth-fastest growing state in the country measured by the economy, and the sixth-fastest measured by population.

How I put that tax cut to work

This booming economy has been largely overlooked in today’s 24-hour news cycle. But Arizonans should consider it when they cast their vote on Election Day.

While part of today’s economic growth can be chalked up to the continuation of a nine-year bull market, tax cuts are buoying the economy to new heights.

I can speak with some authority as the owner of HT Metals in Tucson. Tax cuts delivered a new 20 percent small business tax deduction, allowing owners like me to protect one-fifth of our earnings to reinvest back into our businesses. This tax relief lowers the effective top marginal tax rate for small business owners from 40 percent to 30 percent, strengthening the backbone of the American economy.

With these additional funds, I have purchased an additional piece of equipment and improved benefits for my employees. Multiply similar actions across the nation’s 30 million small business owners, and you get a better understanding of how tax cuts are fueling this economic fire. It’s no surprise that small business confidence is at a record high.

Why this is a key election issue

Critics complain that these tax cuts are little more than a gift to the rich. Tucson Democratic Rep. Raul Grijalva called the tax cuts “a handout to large corporations and the wealthiest Americans.”

Yet I’m living proof this narrative is false. In fact, the 20 percent tax deduction is off limits for white-collar small businesses earning more than $315,000 per year (filing jointly). The top quintile of earners actually sees their share of federal taxes rise as a result.

But more importantly, these tax cuts are lifting all boats. Black and Hispanic unemployment rates are at record lows. And those on fixed incomes, who have largely been shut out of the recent stock market gains, are the ones who benefit most from rising economic growth, which exceeded 4 percent in the most recent quarter.

That’s what makes Democrat efforts to repeal the tax cuts so disheartening. Leading Democrats Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer have promised to repeal the tax cuts if they retake Congress on Election Day. Colorado Democratic Rep. Jared Polis has even introduced legislation to that effect.

Taking money out of the pockets of small businesses and their employees by repealing these tax cuts would be a major blow for working Americans.

That’s why it’s so important to vote your pocketbook on Election Day next month. Support a continuation of falling unemployment and rising wages.

Carlos Ruiz is the owner of HT Metals in Tucson. Reach him at carlosruizmetals@gmail.com.

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