Wednesday, July 25, 2018

TRUMP ADVISERS PANIC: Trump Wants 25 Percent Auto Tariff



Several of President Trump’s senior economic advisers believe he plans to push forward with 25 percent tariffs on close to $200 billion in foreign-made automobiles later this year, reports The Washington Post.

Trump wants to move forward despite numerous warnings from GOP leaders and business executives who have argued that such a move could damage the economy and lead to political mutiny.

But, according to WaPo, Trump has become increasingly defiant in his trade strategy, following his own instincts and intuition and eschewing advice from his inner circle. He has told advisers and Republicans to simply trust his business acumen, a point he tried to reinforce Wednesday morning in a Twitter post.
More from WaPo:
Trump has said imposing tariffs on foreign cars could push Americans to buy more U.S. automobiles, helping U.S. workers. But critics think tariffs would drive up the cost of all cars and pass those inflated prices on to consumers...

The disharmony within the White House is spilling into public view, something that appears to be bothering Trump. On Wednesday, White House budget director Mick Mulvaney said at a CNBC event that he and National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow were at odds with others on how to proceed on trade, but that Trump made the ultimate decisions on his own.

“The president hears all the arguments, but he makes the final decision,” Mulvaney said.


Trump appears to be irked by people questioning his approach....

Before Trump could impose tariffs on auto imports, the Commerce Department must issue a finding that they pose a national security threat to the United States. Several Republican lawmakers have said such a finding would be laughable, but the Commerce Department has flexibility to make a determination on its own.

A Commerce Department official, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss the process so far, said the review had not been completed and no final decisions had been made.

Before Trump could impose tariffs on auto imports, the Commerce Department must issue a finding that they pose a national security threat to the United States. Several Republican lawmakers have said such a finding would be laughable, but the Commerce Department has flexibility to make a determination on its own.

A Commerce Department official, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss the process so far, said the review had not been completed and no final decisions had been made.

-RW