Trump's Economic Plan: Boom or Bust for U.S. Job Growth?

Continental Resources (NYSE:CLR) CEO Harold Hamm and Trump campaign Finance Chairman Steven Mnuchin weighed in on the first presidential debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton and the candidates’ competing plans for U.S. energy and the economy.

Hamm reacted to Trump slamming Clinton over her energy plan during the debate.

“This candidate, Hillary Clinton, is going to do the very same thing that’s been going on for the past eight years.  And that is try to put all fossil fuels out of business, has done that with coal, now turns her attention to oil and gas.  So we’ve got somebody here that, unlike Ronald Reagan, is wanting higher taxes, more regulations,” Hamm told the FOX Business Network’s Maria Bartiromo.

Hamm then compared that to Trump’s plan for the U.S. economy.

“On the other side, we’ve got a candidate that’s pro-business, wants to create jobs, make America great again and wants to release the pent up potential of this country.  That’s what we saw last night.”

Mnuchin then discussed the business leaders supporting Hillary Clinton in an effort to maintain the status quo.

“There’s been this article about CEOs, she [Hillary Clinton] has 15 of the Fortune 100, that’s it.  And the Fortune 100 are all big companies that want the status quo.  We’re going to release a letter shortly with 100 CEOs and business leaders supporting Trump.”

But The Wall Street Journal Editor-in-Chief Gerry Baker questioned the lack of support among Fortune 100 CEOs for Donald Trump.

“Can I just interrupt you on that, because I think that was actually our story.  You say, right, 15 are supporting her, 30 supported Mitt Romney in 2012, which wasn’t the status quo.  So the 30 of the top 100 companies supported Mitt Romney, 15 are supporting Hillary Clinton, zero are supporting Donald Trump this time around.  That does say something doesn’t it, about the way his fellow business men and women think about him?”

To which Mnuchin reacted, “Again you’re referring to the Fortune 100, this is a very small part of business.  This country is about small business.”

But Baker responded, “It’s a huge part of business actually.”

Mnuchin then focused on Trump’s support among small and medium-sized businesses.

“What I’m commenting on is our economy is going to grow as relative to small and medium sized businesses.  We have the support of the small business groups okay, we have the support of the trade group on our tax plan.  There’s a huge difference.  As we’re on the road, one of the things we hear from corporations and small businesses, less regulation.  So we believe we have much more support on a much broader basis.”

Mnuchin explained that Trump’s economic plan would create 25 million new jobs and discussed some of the key factors that would drive that job growth.

“It’s not that hard.  So, first of all, we start out with a tax plan okay, where we cut corporate taxes.  We need to have the corporate tax rate be competitive.  Why do we have inversions?  The reason we have inversions is because the rest of the world is more competitive.  Why do we have Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) sitting with billions and billions of cash offshore that they’re borrowing against their cash? None of this makes any sense.”

But 32 Advisors CEO Robert Wolf questioned the job growth projected for Trump’s proposed economic plan.

“Trump’s plan doesn’t give 25 million jobs,” Wolf continued, “it loses jobs and adds five trillion to the deficit.”

To which Mnuchin responded, “The Tax Foundation has priced the tax plan, okay.  There’s about two and a half trillion dollars of lost revenue which we can easily make up in additional revenue as a result of less regulation, the energy policy and trade, that’s first of all.  The Tax Foundation shows a growth in jobs.” Mnuchin continued, “We can factually back up 25 million new jobs.”

Hamm then reiterated that a Hillary Clinton presidency would be a continuation of the Obama Administration policies he viewed as hindering the U.S. energy sector.

“First of all, the regulations that Obama’s thrown in place is like six to seven times the prior Bush Administration’s regulations.  And they’re designed basically to put us out of business.   And that’s exactly what he wants to do.” Hamm continued, “What she wants to do is tag on exactly to where Obama’s been for the past eight years, so it’s very, very onerous.”