Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) on Tuesday questioned why his Republican colleagues can’t stand up to President Trump’s tariffs, saying: “This is a big part of what we stand for, free trade.”
“If Republicans can’t stand up to tariffs and for free trade, then what are we here for?” Flake told reporters.
“This is a big part of what we stand for, free trade. Fiscal discipline, we seem to have thrown that out the window. And now if we throw this out, it’s tough to see who we are,” Flake added.
Flake’s remarks come after Trump called fair trade “fool trade” in a tweet on Sunday following the G-7 summit in Canada.
Fair Trade is now to be called Fool Trade if it is not Reciprocal. According to a Canada release, they make almost 100 Billion Dollars in Trade with U.S. (guess they were bragging and got caught!). Minimum is 17B. Tax Dairy from us at 270%. Then Justin acts hurt when called out!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 11, 2018
The Hill added:
The president recently announced a 25 percent tariff on steel and a 10 percent tariff on imported aluminum from most nations including allies Canada, Mexico and the European Union.
Trump has said that Canada and other countries have taken advantage of the U.S. and created trade deficits that hurt Americans.
A number of countries have announced they would take reciprocal action against the tariffs, raising fears of a trade war with allies.
Flake went after White House National Trade Council Director Peter Navarro earlier this week for saying “there’s a special place in hell” for Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
“There’s a special place in hell for any foreign leader that engages in bad faith diplomacy with President Donald J. Trump and then tries to stab him in the back on the way out the door,” Navarro told Chris Wallace on “Fox News Sunday.”
“Fellow Republicans, this is not who we are. This cannot be our party,” Flake tweeted in response.