President Donald Trump started his week on Monday, October 23 with tweets about tax cuts, the National Anthem and a war widow.
Trump began tweeting to his 41 million followers just before 8 a.m. Eastern time at the White House. He started with a tweet denying reports that his tax plan would sharply reduce 401Ks, the tax-free retirement plans. Ten minutes later, the president tweeted about football players who are taking a knee during the National Anthem at games. And about a half an hour later, Trump tweeted about his private conversation with the widow of Army Sgt. La David Johnson, who was killed with three other soldiers in Niger on October 4.
Here’s what you need to know:
Trump Denied Reports That Say His Tax Plan Would Slash 401Ks
At 7:42 a.m. Eastern time, Trump tweeted about reports that his tax plan would sharply reduce 401Ks, the tax-free retirement plans.
“There will be NO change to your 401(k). This has always been a great and popular middle class tax break that works, and it stays!” Trump tweeted.
There have been several reports that Republicans are considering lowering the cap on employee contributions. According to Reuters:
The Wall Street Journal and the New York Times reported on Friday that Republicans were considering an annual cap of about $2,400 on pre-tax contributions to 401(k) plans, roughly 13 percent of what workers under age 50 currently can contribute on a tax-deferred basis.
The Senate passed a $4 trillion budget plan last week with a vote of 51-49, according to the Associated Press. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky was the only GOP vote against the bill, which helps pave the pay for Trump’s plan to cut taxes, but is still an uphill climb for the Trump administration.
Trump Criticized the NFL For Not Banning Players Who Take a Knee During the National Anthem
At 7:53 a.m. Eastern time, Trump tweeted about NFL players who have taken a knee during the National Anthem. Trump, who spent Sunday at the Trump National Golf Club in Virginia, complained that players were continuing to use the gesture as a protest to racial inequality in the country.
“Two dozen NFL players continue to kneel during the National Anthem, showing total disrespect to our Flag & Country. No leadership in NFL!” Trump tweeted.
Last month, during a speech in Huntsville, Alabama, Trump encouraged the NFL to kick players off the field if they take part in the protest.
“Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Out! He’s fired. He’s fired!’” Trump said during the speech. “You know, some owner is going to do that. He’s going to say, ‘That guy that disrespects our flag, he’s fired.’ And that owner, they don’t know it [but] they’ll be the most popular person in this country.”
Last week, Trump and Vice President Mike Pence created the “Official Stand for the Anthem” petition to ask “for a list of supporters who stand for the National Anthem.”
Trump Denied That He Didn’t Know a Fallen Soldier’s Name During a Conversation With His Widow
At 8:30 a.m. Eastern time, Trump sent a tweet about his recent conversation with Myeshia Johnson, whose husband Army Sgt. La David Johnson was killed in Niger on October 4.
Florida Rep. Frederica Wilson said that when Trump called Myeshia Johnson last week he told her that her husband, a Green Beret, “knew what he signed up for … but when it happens, it hurts anyway,” according to ABC Local 10 News in Miami.
Wilson also said that Trump referred to her husband as “your guy” rather than calling him by name, according to ABC News.
On Monday, Trump tweeted: “I had a very respectful conversation with the widow of Sgt. La David Johnson, and spoke his name from beginning, without hesitation!”
Trump Also Tweeted About the Anniversary of the 1983 Marine Barracks Bombing in Beirut
At 7:18 p.m. Eastern time, Trump shared a tweet from Vice President Mike Pence, who attended a ceremony to mark the 34th anniversary of the bombing of the Marine barracks in Beirut that killed 241 Americans.
“We will never forget the 241 American service members killed by Hizballah in Beirut. They died in service to our nation,” Trump tweeted.
Pence attended a ceremony at Marine Barracks in Washington, D.C. on Monday.
“The men we lost were fathers, they were brothers, they were sons, and they died in defense of peace and freedom. And for that, we will forever remember their service and their sacrifice – of that I can assure these precious families who are here today,” Pence said.
Click here to read Pence’s full remarks.