Republicans are feeling a lot of heat on the campaign trail because of one of their most contentious tax policy changes. Anecdotal evidence suggests that many voters says they will vote democrat in high-tax states because of the Republican-led change to greatly reduce SALT deductions, which has sent tax bills soaring for many affluent residents of high-tax states. Democrats have promised to abolish the SALT deduction limit.
FINSUM: The interesting thing here is that the most pain from the tax change is being in felt in some of the districts that went red in 2016. For example, there are many affluent suburbs in New Jersey that are now feeling the pinch from the changes, which could, in aggregate, change the outlook for midterms.
Investors need to be aware that big political news may be released any minute. That may not sound like much of a statement these days, but Bloomberg is reporting that Robert Mueller may release the findings from his investigations very soon. Bloomberg says Mueller is under immense pressure to release the findings of his probe or cease his investigation. He is especially under pressure to release whether he has found evidence of collusion between Trump and Russia and whether the president did anything to obstruct justice.
FINSUM: It seems likely that these findings won’t be released until after the midterms, but you never know if a politically-motivated early release right before the election might occur.
It looks like Michael Bloomberg, founder of the eponymous financial data firm, is eyeing a run at the White House. The move, which the Financial Times quipped was one New York Billionaire trying to replace another as president, surprises no one, as Bloomberg has been hinting at his run for some time. He has given over $100m to Democratic candidates for the midterm elections, something a staffer said was “a hell of a lot of IOUs”. Bloomberg will be 78 years old in 2020.
FINSUM: Speaking purely from a competitive standpoint, we have mixed feelings about whether he would be a good candidate for the Democratic party. On the one hand, he is more centrist than a lot of other Democrats, so could get some Republican votes. But on the other, he is also a New York billionaire, which could turn some off.
It has just been announced that New York state is opening a tax probe into the Trump family. The scope of the investigation will be extensive, digging into the president’s inheritance form decades ago. The investigation was prompted by an extensive article published by the New York Times which alleges fraud in Trump’s tax affairs. The NY state department of taxation said it was “vigorously pursuing all appropriate avenues of investigation”. The New York times alleges that Trump undertook “dubious tax schemes during the 1990s, including instances of outright fraud”.
FINSUM: Here comes another potential legal headache for Trump.
Interesting news out of the media-shy Mueller investigation today. Two prosecutors on Mueller’s team are leaving or have already left the probe. The departures come following the prosecution of Paul Manafort. The news comes after an announcement in August that two other prosecutors had already left the probe. The newest departures mean there are 13 members remaining on Mueller’s team. James Comey comments that the investigation may be in its “fourth quarter” following the Manafort plea.
FINSUM: It looks like the Mueller investigation is either winding down or falling apart. Either way it seems likely it may finally conclude.
The trouble for Supreme Court justice-nominee Kavanaugh continues to pile up. Not only has one woman come forward with allegations of sexual misconduct, but now another has done so. Kavanaugh is set to give testimony, along with his accuser, on Thursday, but just as this was decided, a new accuser (this from his college years) has come forward. In a rare television interview, Kavanaugh confirmed yesterday that he had not sexually assaulted anyone, ever, and that he would not be withdrawing from the nomination hearings.
FINSUM: This is a very high stakes nomination considering the midterm elections are looming. There are certainly more fireworks to come.