Congressional members respond to Pres. Trump's metal tariffs

Carla Harmon
March 12, 2018

Johnson, chairman of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, said that he would support Flake's bill even though he doubted it would survive a presidential veto.

And in OH, 410,300 workers are directly employed in industries that use steel and aluminum, according to Crain's Cleveland.

Many lawmakers on both sides seem to agree the tariffs are not in the best interest of business in Wisconsin, but also agreed Pres. Trump's argument that countries like China are unfairly trading with the grossly over-producing steel to undercut the price. According to economic analysts, some of the communities that would be hardest hit by a trade standoff could be the same ones the president says he's aiming to help.

The chief executive imposed the new levies last week in an effort to protect American industries and jobs, and to promote fairer trade on the worldwide markets. Having made little progress in Congress on several GOP priorities, Republican candidates have been banking on a strong economy and the growing popularity of the party's tax overhaul to combat a Democratic electorate energized by its disdain for Trump. The U.S. will levy a 25 percent duty on steel and 10 percent on aluminum, the same level Trump promised when he revealed the plan March 1.

Republicans do not like these tariffs.

Now, it's important to realize that the USA trade deficit isn't necessarily a bad thing.

Republican Ben Sasse of Nebraska said the on the verge of a "stupid trade war".

So, while the tariffs could be good for certain companies and industries, they could still be damaging to our economy as a whole.

Trump also suggested Australia and "other countries" might be spared.

Trump has said the US will be "very fair" but "very flexible" and "protect the American worker". He has urged Republican lawmakers to stay focused on reminding voters about the tax cuts rather than White House policy surprises and scandals.

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady, a Texas Republican, praised Trump for exempting Mexico and Canada from tariffs - for now - and said the White House should "go further to narrow these tariffs so they hit the intended target -- and not US workers, businesses, and families". Flake aggressively pushed for such legislation to block Trump from imposing the tariffs.

Economic analysts warn that a trade dispute sparked by the tariffs could damage communities that backed the president in 2016.

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