>> The tax plan is going to be incredible for this country.>> As President Trump's Republicans advance their tax overhaul, House Speaker Paul Ryan tells Reuters the plan won't widen budget deficits.>> I'm Andy Sullivan in Washington, where Ryan laid out a detailed argument about how his planned tax overhaul will expand the US economy and raise wages.
>> More investment, higher wages, bigger paychecks, more jobs. And we wouldn't be doing this if we don't believe that.>> It's the sort of message that often gets obscured in the daily drama of President Trump's Washington. Ryan spent a fair amount of time talking in detail about the need to lower business taxes.
But he spent relatively little time talking about how individual tax rates might fare under his tax plan. And that's sure to be a crucial issue in the weeks and months ahead. Ryan told Reuters' Editor in Chief Steve Adler that Americans will have to consider the merits of the tax plan as a whole rather than focusing on individual parts when Republicans unveil details as soon as next week.
Ryan compared the opposition to a raging river.>> We've been going through class three rapids, which is a pleasant ride. It's nice, everybody pretty much stays in the boat. And it's pretty good. But we're about to go through class five rapids, which is the biggest rapid you can go through.
And we've gotta make sure that everybody stays in the boat and we get the boat down the river. The general interest so clearly will and needs to triumph over the special interests.>> Ryan declined how to say how a popular tax break for retirement savings will fare, Trump pushing to keep it in place.
He also didn't say whether the wealthiest Americans would see the biggest tax cuts, as Democrats charge. But he said that the stronger economic growth that would result would benefit rich and poor alike.>> But if you're working on a fixed income, living paycheck to paycheck, you haven't seen a raise in a long time.
We want the economic growth to apply to everybody.>> Independent analysts, as well as many Democrats, say the tax plan will worsen budget deficits by trillions of dollars. But Ryan, arguing that a stronger economy will generate more tax revenue, a supply side argument that hearkens back to the 1980s.
>> Is Congress truly on track to provide a deficit neutral tax plan?>> Yeah, we don't anticipate a big deficit effect from this tax reform. Because we will broaden the base and lower the rates, plug loopholes and get faster economic growth.>> And Ryan doesn't see the running feud between Trump and retiring Senators Bob Corker and Jeff Flake as a roadblock to tax reform.
>> I think it's in our interest to have party unity. I'm not that worried about this, because I know Jeff, I know Bob, and these guys. I know they want what's right for their constituents, and I know they're for tax reform. But it would be nicer to see people just settle their differences in private than in public.
>> So far, the public isn't on board. Reuters/Ipsos polling shows that fewer than one-third of Americans support this tax plan. And two-thirds say that it's more important to reduce the deficit than cut taxes, including most Republicans. So Ryan and his Republicans have a significant sales job ahead if they wanna get their tax plan across the finish line.