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Here’s why 100 business leaders support Trump for president

After seven years of anemic economic growth, Americans are facing limited job opportunities, stagnant wages, a diminishing middle class and dismal economic prospects for our youth. A recent Pew Research study found young adults more likely to be living in their parents' homes than at any time since 1940 — Hillary Clinton refers to them as Bernie Sanders basement dwellers.

According to the Congressional Budget Office, nearly one in six young men is either jobless or incarcerated, up from about one in 10 in 1980, when the economy was in recession. Gross Domestic Product should be averaging an annual growth rate of 3 percent to 4 percent, particularly coming out of a deep recession. It hasn't happened.

In 2010, the White House projected that GDP growth would "accelerate in 2011 to 3.8 percent" and "exceed 4 percent per year in 2012-2014." However, GDP has averaged about 2 percent since the recession ended, producing the worst economic recovery since World War II.

So far this year, the situation is even worse, with GDP averaging about 1 percent. The Federal Reserve is projecting GDP growth going forward at a mere 2 percent annually. In fact, the economy is so weak that the Fed is afraid to raise interest rates even one quarter of one percent (0.25 percent). Despite all the hyperbole about the supposed economic recovery, this reticence speaks volumes as to the actual state of the economy.

Working and middle class parents understand these numbers all too well. After seven years of tepid recovery, a recent poll from YouGov found that two out of three Americans believe either that the economy has yet to recover (55 percent) or will never recover (12 percent). In a recent Gallup poll Americans said the economy was the single most important issue the next president should address. They were right — and it's long past time in this electoral cycle to have this national conversation.

Whoever wins this election will be left with the Obama-Clinton legacy of anemic economic growth. It has widened the gap between the upper class and the working class, diminished the middle class, and destroyed the economic opportunities for which our nation has been known for generations. The obvious way to reverse this trend would be to encourage the private sector growth necessary to revive the economy and create good paying jobs.

"Every element of the Trump plan points synergistically, interactively, and dynamically towards growth. Hillary's plan points in the exact opposite direction — and towards a secular bear market."

Instead, Clinton has acknowledged she intends to "defend and build on"President Obama's economic "legacy." As clear a policy indictment as that is, in reality she would make things much worse. Clinton, would raise taxes on "the wealthy" to "make the economy fairer," further discouraging investment and condemning us to prolonged abysmal economic growth.

She would further enlarge the already massive and oppressive regulatory state as she views more government as the solution to every problem. She would stifle our energy industry and drive up electricity and gas prices. She would continue with the bad trade deals that have generated our massive trade deficits — NAFTA, China's entry into the World Trade Organization, the 2012 South Korean deal, and, worst of all if she is elected, the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which would end manufacturing as we know it in America.

Donald Trump would incentivize both small and large business growth by lowering the corporate tax rate (and everyone else's tax rate), encouraging businesses to invest in America and to bring their foreign earnings to the U.S. He has promised to reduce the growth-destroying regulatory burdens American businesses must bear, including the repeal and replacement of Obamacare. He would keep our energy dollars and jobs in the U.S. by an "all of the above" energy policy. He would renegotiate every bad Clinton trade deal and negotiate equitable new ones. Trump would also crack down on the mercantilist trade cheaters, thereby bringing jobs and industries back to America and reducing our massive trade deficits.

Every element of the Trump plan points synergistically, interactively, and dynamically towards growth. Hillary's plan points in the exact opposite direction — and towards a secular bear market.

For all these reasons, we are today joining more than 100 businessmen and businesswomen, entrepreneurs and executives in a statement of strong support for Donald Trump's pro-growth economic plan to revive our stagnant economy. By making America grow again, we can make America great again.

As our statement says, "our nation needs a president who understands free markets because he's lived and worked in them. We need a president who understands how government can hobble innovation, destroy opportunity and restrain growth. We need a president who knows how economic freedom can lift people from poverty, open paths to and grow the middle class while offering everyone the opportunity to earn their success."

Donald Trump would be that president. We strongly urge our fellow Americans to help us see that he is.

Commentary by Dan DiMicco and Andy Puzder. DiMicco is the former CEO and chairman of Nucor Steel. Puzder is the CEO of CKE Restaurants, the parent of the Carl's Jr. chain. Both are senior policy advisors to the Trump campaign. Follow them on Twitter @DanRDimicco and @AndyPuzder.

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