Trump says he will keep taxes low as a $50 million fundraising event for billionaires

WASHINGTON — Former President Donald Trump stressed the importance of extending his signature tax cuts to some of the nation's wealthiest political donors, according to a readout of his private comments provided Saturday night by a Trump campaign official.

“Trump has talked about the need to win back the White House so we can turn our country around by focusing on core issues including unleashing energy production, securing our southern border, reducing inflation, extending the Trump tax cuts, and ending Joe Biden's insanity. [electric vehicle] mandate, protecting Israel and avoiding global war,” the campaign official said of the roughly 45-minute speech to donors in Palm Beach, Florida.

The campaign declined NBC News' requests to have a reporter present for his comments and to make available a full transcript of them.

The party, held at the home of billionaire hedge fund investor John Paulson, raised $50.5 million for a joint fundraising effort benefiting Trump's campaign, his Save America political action group, the Republican National Committee and state parties, Trump senior advisers Susie Wiles and Chris Lacivita said. . That's more than double the $26 million President Joe Biden's campaign raised last month at a star-studded Radio City Music Hall show featuring former presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton.

In a video released Saturday, Biden attacked Trump for promising to extend the 2017 tax cuts beyond 2025.

“When he thinks the cameras aren't rolling, he's quoting his rich friends, 'We're going to give you tax cuts,'” Biden said in the video, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., says as he stands by. A leading progressive running against Biden in the 2020 Democratic presidential primary.

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Trump appeared to be trying to enlist donations from the nation's elite — a collection that includes billionaires such as sugar magnate Jose “Pepe” Fanjul Sr., oil tycoon Harold Hamm and Johnson & Johnson heir Woody Johnson. A political movement fueled by populist themes.

“People want change,” he told reporters at Paulson's house. “The rich want it, the poor want it, everybody wants change.”

During his remarks, Trump praised the donors in attendance.

“We have expertise in this room and it's incredible — every one of you are leaders,” the campaign official said.

From the head table, Trump spoke for about 45 minutes to 117 guests seated under a large tent, a campaign official said. Afterwards, they ate endive and frisee salad with fresh berries, filet au poivre and pavlova.

Trump's defeated primary opponents, Sen. Tim Scott, RSC, businessman Vivek Ramaswamy and North Dakota Gov. Doug Bergham — along with Republican National Committee co-chairs Laura Trump and Michael Whatley — also addressed the crowd. .

Trump's 2017 tax cuts lowered income tax rates for most Americans, including high earners and very low-income workers. Many of its provisions expire in 2025, and so-called pass-through businesses — including a loophole for owners of untaxed companies that allow profits to flow to separately taxed owners — are favored by hedge funds. , private equity partnerships and privately held companies. Liberal-leaning, nonpartisan center for budget and policy priorities Estimated Extending the pass-through deduction would cost the government $700 billion in lost revenue over a decade.

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