ECONOMIC POLICY IN THE TRUMP ERA: BIPARTISAN ADVOCACY, AUTHORITATIVE RESEARCH, AND MEDIA CREDIBILITY MORE CRITICAL THAN EVER
In 2017, the ACCF (American Council for Capital Formation) continued its strong leadership role in advancing pro-growth U.S. economic policy—tax reform, energy policy, regulatory improvement, trade policy, and corporate governance. This broad agenda combined with our modus operandi: authoritative research, bipartisan advocacy, and media credibility is an effective model in U.S. economic policymaking and will continue to be in the years ahead.
Despite harsh levels of political rhetoric unseen in previous years, real progress was made in 2017. Most notably, the first comprehensive overhaul of our tax code in three decades was signed into law. The ACCF played an active role in this effort just as it has in every tax reform effort since the 1970s. Our tax reform efforts included forums with House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady, President Trump’s Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers Kevin Hassett, and two panels with our ACCF Scholars and the media. The ACCF was also prominent on tax reform in the media, with interviews on CNBC, Fox Business Network, and BBC. We also published fifteen op-eds on tax reform.
Perhaps not as high profile, but equally important, is the progress made on improving our federal regulatory system—an issue at the core of ACCF’s mission. Dr. Murray Weidenbaum, the former Chairman of President Reagan’s Council of Economic Advisers and a founding Director of the ACCF, was known for his pioneering work on U.S. regulatory policy, arguing that regulatory improvement must be central to our economic policy goals.
In 2017, the ACCF published a special report that outlined ten impactful ideas that can facilitate regulatory improvement and ensue process certainty. This paper was the result of a roundtable discussion with several U.S. Senate leaders of both political parties. The ACCF also dedicated several of its signature economic policy evenings to improve the regulatory system with congressional leaders, the business community and the media.
The ACCF also took on two new issue areas. Our energy innovation mission strives to advance programs and policies to help advance pioneering technologies and cleaner forms of energy, including advanced fossil energy, nuclear energy, renewable energy, and energy efficiency. The ACCF also launched a new initiative on corporate governance and the growing efforts of activism at the board level that, in many instances, are having a negative impact on shareholders and taxpayers.
Looking ahead, we remain optimistic for better economic policy, but challenging waters lie ahead on immigration reform, trade policy, and corporate governance among other issues. We also cannot ignore the growing de cit or the ongoing unfair taxation of savings versus consumption. The ACCF will continue its leadership in working with the Trump administration and Congress to create a higher standard of living, growth and competitiveness.
President & CEO