Republican senators praise Trump’s plan to scrap taxes on tips

Republican senators praise Trump’s plan to scrap taxes on tips

Republican senators buzzed about former President Trump’s pitch to get rid of taxes on tips after meeting Thursday with the presumptive GOP nominee on Capitol Hill, a move intended to elicit support from voters working in the service industry.

“One of the other senators made mention to him that this is actually talking to a lot of segments of our working population, whether you’re a server or a valet or a coffee barista — wherever you are,” Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) said Thursday.

“[Trump] had heard complaints about the administration, the way they’re reformulating the taxes on tips, and I think he was reacting to that,” she said.

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment about whether the administration was considering a policy change relating to tips.

The President’s 2025 budget proposal stresses that the administration has recovered more than $770 million for workers who’ve been the victim of wage theft, “including when they were not paid minimum wages or hard-earned overtime wages [or] were denied their tips.”

Trump initially floated the idea for a cancellation of taxes on tips at a rally Sunday in Las Vegas, which has a huge gambling and tourism industry with many service sector workers.

“When I get to office we are going to not charge taxes on tips, people making tips,” Trump said.

Republican lawmakers seemed delighted by the idea Thursday after their meeting.

“This tips thing was genius,” Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) said. “[Trump] was like, I’d love to tell you it was based on a bunch of research but it was based on a discussion with a waitress who said, ‘They’re coming after my tips.’”

“They’re just feeling this assault on their tips,” he said.

About 15.8 million people worked in the leisure and hospitality sector in 2022, which are typically some of the lowest-paid jobs in the economy.

Tipping as a commercial practice has grown more widespread in recent years as electronic payment methods have become more widely adopted, many of which offer an option to tip as a default.

Seventy-two percent of Americans polled by Pew last year said that tipping has spread to more places.

“Around seven-in-ten U.S. adults (72%) say tipping is expected in more places today than it was five years ago, a finding that tracks with anecdotal reporting and has even been dubbed ‘tipflation,’” according to CBS News.

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