House Speaker Ryan criticizes Trump tariff plan

Mar 11, 2018, 00:55

The competing economic instincts that are dividing Trump from the rest of his Republican Party were on full display Thursday. He signed separate proclamations ordering the tariffs.

Just a few months after he helped drive Trump's landmark tax reform through Congress, Orrin Hatch, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, expressed astonishment at the president's decision.

According to reports, Canada and Mexico are exempt from the tariffs amid larger trade negotiations. Trade is now the issue that has driven the most distance between Ryan and the president he reluctantly endorsed during the campaign.

John McCain, expressed concern that Trump's sharp tariffs will actually hurt the USA economy.

The president signed a proclamation authorizing the tariffs at a meeting Thursday afternoon with workers from the steel and aluminum industries.

The president reiterated that he would levy tariffs of 25 percent on imported steel and 10 percent on aluminum but would "have a right to go up or down depending on the country and I'll have a right to drop out countries or add countries". The tariffs will take effect in 15 days. Those viewpoints became the centerpiece of his presidential campaign, and he vowed to not only slap tougher tariffs on exports, but also withdraw the United States from multilateral free trade agreements with allies in Asia and North America. If U.S. importers and industrial users decide to challenge the tariffs in court, they may try a tactic that stymied Trump's original ban on letting visitors from certain countries enter the U.S. and his executive actions on immigration: using his own words against him.

"Our factories were left to rot, and to rust all over the place".

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, R-Wis., pauses as he meets with reporters following a closed-door Republican strategy session on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, March 6, 2018.

All 435 seats in the House will be on ballots. "I will immediately draft and introduce legislation to nullify these tariffs, and I urge my colleagues to pass it before this exercise in protectionism inflicts any more damage on the economy". The party's odds of gaining a majority in the Senate, where the GOP holds a one-vote majority, are steeper because Democrats hold most of the seats up for election this year.

"These so-called "flexible tariffs" are a marriage of two lethal poisons to economic growth - protectionism and uncertainty". He said he plans legislation that would nullify them.

Sarah Sanders further referred that lawmakers should not be in a state of shock after the President's move, as "If they were caught off guard, they simply haven't been listening to what he's been saying and what he's been talking about and how he's promised to make good trade deals", she said. "There may be people who lose less". More prominent critics of the tariffs include former Former Bush White House chief of staff Joshua Bolten and the World Trade Organization.

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