Early on Tuesday President Trump tweeted, “Tariffs are the greatest!”
Tariffs are the greatest! Either a country which has treated the United States unfairly on Trade negotiates a fair deal, or it gets hit with Tariffs. It’s as simple as that – and everybody’s talking! Remember, we are the “piggy bank” that’s being robbed. All will be Great!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 24, 2018
Tuesday afternoon the Trump administration is expected to announce “a plan to extend some $12 billion in emergency aid to farmers,” according to a new Wall Street Journal article. The aid comes as concerns grow that the “U.S. agricultural sector could suffer from President Trump’s escalating trade,” conflicts.
CNBC news spoke with Joe Steinkamp, a leading figure in farming circles, and a director on the board of the American Soybean Association, who paints a dire picture of the industry, “Right now it’s looking bleak for farming.” CNBC adds that Steinkamp says there’s a risk of farmers exiting the business, “I knew they were going to do something for the benefit for farmers. Obviously, [the administration thinks] it will be a medium- to long-term fix to get the trade dispute with China figured out,” Steinkamp added, “But I am always scared when the government is helping us out rather than doing positive things for trade.”
The News Blender reported earlier in July, that on top of the already in place tariffs on steel, aluminum, China, and the EU, the President had announced another round of tariffs on China, most of which is food, @ 10 percent which could start before the end of the year.
The emergency bailout announcement comes just one day before EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker is set to meet with officials in D.C. in the hopes of tamping down President Trump’s escalating trade wars and comes as the U.S. Trade Representative kicks off two days of public hearings, “on a plan to apply tariffs of 25% on roughly $16 billion in Chinese imports to the U.S., a move following tariffs on $34 billion in goods that have already taken effect,” The Wall Street Journal adds that a series of panels are set to testify on both Tuesday and Wednesday, many of those testifying are expected to, “publicly push back on the measure.”
The Wall Street Journal states that the National Retail Federation and 65 other businesses wrote to U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer saying, “if the goal is to open markets for U.S. goods and services aboard, the use of tariffs goes against that goal.”
Companies such as Intel, Qualcomm, Texas Instruments, and Micron said the tariffs will “undermine U.S. technological leadership, cost jobs, and adversely impact U.S. consumers of semiconductor products and the U.S. semiconductor producers.”
As of last week, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross when asked about the proposed auto import tariffs stated that the administration has yet to decided whether or not to implement the proposed 25 percent tariffs on national security grounds.
Senator Ben Sasse (R-NE) who has been an outspoken critic of tariffs is said to have said about the bailout, “White House’s ‘plan’ is to spend $12 billion on gold crutches.”
GOP Senator Ben Sasse criticized White House plan for tariff bailout for farmers, saying "This trade war is cutting the legs out from under farmers and White House’s ‘plan’ is to spend $12 billion on gold crutches"
— Steve Brusk (@stevebruskCNN) July 24, 2018