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Deroy Murdock: Kudlow selection thrilled free-marketeers

March 15. 2018 11:13PM

President Donald J. Trump has tapped Larry Kudlow as chief economic adviser. Free-marketeers are cheering among their graphs and charts.

“Larry Kudlow is an excellent choice,” Freedom Works president Adam Brandon tells me. “He’s a former economist in the Ronald Reagan administration with the knowledge and the experience necessary to advise the President on ‘America First’ policies that will continue growing the economy and creating jobs through free markets, lower taxes, and less regulation.”

National Association of Manufacturers president Jay Timmons says: “President Trump has chosen a tremendous advocate for free enterprise and competitiveness in the United States to lead his economic team.”

“Club for Growth praises President Trump for his ability to attract top talent to join his staff,” says CFG president David McIntosh.

Kudlow’s many fans in the conservative movement applaud his ability to reflect the concerns of those on Wall Street and the aspirations of those on Main Street. After serving the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Kudlow was chief economist with Bear Stearns — a key investment bank that was washed away in the 2008 financial crisis, 14 years after his tenure. Kudlow gained supporters among those who labor in money-center banks and on high-rise trading floors. But Kudlow also preaches the gospel of entrepreneurial capitalism, namely clearing the path for strivers who take risks in humble shop fronts and innovate in converted basements.

Kudlow has advanced free-market principles since 1989 at CNBC, where he hosted me. He has written for National Review, presented a weekly Westwood One radio show, and frequented conservative gatherings. Kudlow’s ability to push free-market reforms internally and promote them externally will boost the Trump administration.

“Larry Kudlow’s rare combination of experience as an economist and a communicator will help Americans understand that even though the so-called dismal science can live up to its name, it matters to their everyday lives,” says National Taxpayers Union president Pete Sepp. “As a committed advocate of Ronald Reagan’s vision for free trade, he also will provide some much needed balance to the administration’s risky approaches toward tariffs, NAFTA, and other policies on international commerce.”

President Trump does not encircle himself with fawning yes men. Instead, he lets advisers who disagree debate issues before him. Trump weighs conflicting options, then chooses from among them. Kudlow should give Trump proof of the costs, dangers, and damage from hiking taxes on imported steel, aluminum, and other products. Kudlow understands a wiser path: Insourcing. Rather than impede foreign goods, Washington should welcome overseas companies to produce here.

“We want to make America the worldwide investment destination,” Kudlow told CNBC Wednesday. “Companies that left us will come home. International companies that stayed away will come back.”

Kudlow will remind Trump that there’s no limit to what foreign capital and American hands can achieve, here in the land of deregulation and the 21 percent corporate tax.

Kudlow understands the value of applying simple, low rates to a broad tax base. That puts him exactly where America needs him, given Trump’s comments Wednesday on future tax reform.

“We’re actually going for a Phase II,” Trump said at a Boeing factory in St. Louis. Trump added that “in addition to the middle class,” fresh tax cuts “will help companies, and it’s going to be something, I think, very special.” Kudlow is the right man to help Trump direct a sequel to last year’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

Erudite and elegant, Kudlow will add substance and style to President Trump’s economic team. As Americans for Tax Reform president Grover Norquist says: “Larry Kudlow is the best. Full stop.”

Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News Contributor and a contributing editor with National Review Online. He has collaborated with many of the organizations mentioned in this opinion piece.

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