There have been many concerns raised about Trump’s new tariffs on steel and aluminum that is imported from foreign countries into the United States. Free-trade supporters such as fellow Republican Ted Cruz have raised an alarm that putting tariffs would actually harm the economy and cause turmoil in the financial markets. Trump has also signaled that he would consider putting taxes on other goods such as cars coming in from China. Products from Mexico and Canada could be subject to a tariff which has gotten free traders even more nervous.
What is interesting is that most of the critics of Trump’s tariffs have mostly been on the right and libertarian side. Democrats such as Chuck Schumer have actually signaled they are willing to support duties to protect American jobs and workers. Here is a breakdown of why the tariffs that Trump just signed into law on Aluminum and Steel are a big win for our workers and jobs.
Donald Trump has continuously called for free and fair trade both as a candidate and while serving as president. One of the tools he has at his disposal is the use or even just the threat of levying an import tax aka tariff on goods that are imported into the country. Trump correctly says that it is not fair when other countries tax our goods at 20, 50 or 75% and we charge their products 0% when they come into the United States. This is the very definition of an unfair trade relationship that is not reciprocal.
If you read Trump’s tariff bill, you will clearly understand that tariffs will only be issued if other countries cheat or have an unfair trade relationship. Cheating is defined as subsidizing your own industries and placing massive taxes on American imports while having no taxes charged on their products when they export. If a country has no tariffs on American goods, then there will be no import taxes on that country’s exports. That is a fair and reciprocal trade.
Trump’s tariffs will also help to shrink the burgeoning trade deficit that has now ballooned to over $800 billion per year. This is a record amount that shows just how much we lose out on trade. The import taxes will also force countries to play by the rules and treat US workers and companies fairly. Otherwise, they will get taxed. This is a way of protecting our industries and workers from years and years of unfair and nonreciprocal trade deals.