As per usual, former Clinton Labor Secretary Robert Reich word-sparred with pro-Trump economist Stephen Moore about tax cuts. But the segment diverged from the norm when host Erin Burnett joined in to elucidate exactly how and why Moore was so wrong.
As Burnett pointed out, the White House claims that President Donald Trump's tax plan will result in a roughly $3,000 income bump for middle class Americans. But it was when she countered that claim with data that showed median income increases of that amount per year during President Barack Obama's last two years that all hell broke loose.
"If people are getting that increase now, why are you selling them on the tax cuts that'll get them the increase they're already getting?" she implored.
"Here's the big difference between Steve and me," Reich said, pointing to historical data that shows corporate tax cuts go primarily to executives and shareholders -- not to workers. The entire time, Moore tried to interject, but Reich wouldn't let him.
After trying to claim that American experiments in taxing the wealthy and increasing minimum wages resulted in "the worst recovery we've ever had had," Burnett cut him off.
"Except for the $3,000-a-year increase under the last two years of his presidency," she said.
"I have to say this," Reich said to protests from both Burnett and Moore. "Look at the past 44 years, 1972 to 2016. The average typical American is actually, adjusted for inflation, making less today than was making in 1972, with all of the tax cuts from Reagan and Bush."
Watch the war of words over middle class wage increases below, via CNN.