US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is backing down on US President Donald Trump’s promise for tax reforms, asserting that enacting tax reform legislation ahead of August is not “realistic.”
Mnuchin made the comments in an interview with The Financial Times released on Monday.
Last March, Mnuchin said he was aiming to have a tax bill "signed" before August in line with Trump’s campaign pledges for tax reforms.
“It started as [an] aggressive timeline,” he said. “It is fair to say it is probably delayed a bit because of the healthcare.”
His remarks came as the administration of the Republican president was busy dealing with efforts to “repeal and replace” former President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare plan, known as Obamacare, following a failure to do so in March.
Trump’s proposed healthcare bill to replace Obamacare was pulled off the House floor in an embarrassing blow after House Republicans failed to achieve a consensus on the replacement bill.
His failure marked a deeper rift within the Republican Party, in which some congressman opposed Trumpcare.
The administration, however, has not given up and has promised to return with a new bill to the US Congress following the healthcare fiasco.
Mnuchin maintained that tax reforms would be passed by the end of the year 2017.
“The president’s comments during the campaign reflected previous periods of time,” he added.
The treasury secretary also announced that more sanctions would be imposed on Syria and North Korea, further defending Trump’s U-turn on calling China a currency manipulator.