Corey Adams at the State of the Union (Allex Wong/Getty Images)

President Trump used his first State of the Union Address as an occasion to brag extensively about his new tax law. He even installed three human props in the First Lady’s box to illustrate the wonders of the bill for ordinary Americans.

Not surprisingly, the president’s boasts were mostly bluster.

The human props included Steve Staub and Sandy Keplinger, who own a small manufacturing business in Dayton, Ohio, and one of their employees, a welder named Corey Adams. The Staubs claim to be expanding their business and handing out employee raises as a result of new tax law.

We’ll never know if that’s the real reason for the pay increases. Because of labor market tightening that started under the Obama administration, it’s natural that employers are feeling pressure to boost wages. Of course, that didn’t stop the president from taking full credit.

“Corey plans to invest his tax-cut raise into his new home and his two daughters’ education,” Trump proudly proclaimed.

I certainly don’t know the full financial situation of Corey Adams and his family. But if I were him, I’d hold off on any big investments. What Trump left out of his speech are the huge costs that will come from the new tax law—costs that cannot yet be precisely calculated.

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Sarah Anderson directs the Global Economy Project and co-edits at the Institute for Policy Studies.

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