August 13, 2020

New Day's John Berman pointed out that Trump says he wants the complete elimination of the payroll tax, and called it "the most radical change to Social Security in a generation."

"He called for the complete elimination of the payroll tax, which funds Social Security," Berman said.

And with the payroll tax, we'll be terminating the payroll tax, after I hopefully get elected. We'll be terminating the payroll tax, so that will mean anywhere from 5,000 to even more per family. And also great for businesses and great for jobs.

"Look, to be clear, this is not a temporary deferral, not the one he just signed an order on," Berman said.

"He's calling for a complete elimination of the tax, which generates about $1.25 trillion a year. It funds Social Security and Medicare. He says instead, he wants to fund the program through general revenue, which is running trillions in new deficits.

"There's a lot going on here. It also contradicts what the White House adviser Larry Kudlow claimed, but the president was unambiguous and persistent about this. He's going to eliminate, he wants to, the payroll tax completely. The White House has to answer for this. They have to explain how it works. This is not a small thing. This is a radical change. Whether you approve of it or not, it's a radical change and they have to explain this," Berman said.

"They do," Erica Hill agreed.

"What's interesting, the president keeps using, I think, these words, very clearly. He wants to cut it, he wants to eliminate it. We're having officials come out and try to clean up every time and say, no, no, no, that's not really what he means. 'He's talking about this deferral, it's something else.' They keep going back, saying, he's not proposing a permanent cut, but his own words tell us that he is. To your point, John, it is muddy, to put it mildly."

'Is it possible he doesn't understand what he's saying? Yeah. It's possible, but then, the White House has to explain that, as well," Berman said.

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