Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) on Thursday criticized President Trump’s decision to impose massive tariffs on America’s closest allies, including the European Union, Canada, and Mexico, calling the move “dumb.”
“This is dumb,” Sasse said. “Europe, Canada, and Mexico are not China, and you don’t treat allies the same way you treat opponents. We’ve been down this road before — blanket protectionism is a big part of why America had a Great Depression.”
“‘Make America Great Again’ shouldn’t mean ‘Make America 1929 again.'”
Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross announced Thursday that the U.S. would levy 25 percent steel and 10 percent aluminum tariffs on the EU, Canada and Mexico, therefore bringing an end to the temporary exemptions the three trading allies received after Trump announced initial tariffs back in March.
“We look forward to continued negotiations with Canada and Mexico on one hand and with the European Commission on the other hand as there are other issues we need to get resolved,” Ross said Thursday.
The Hill added:
The trading partners are expected to quickly respond. Mexico said it would implement new duties on various U.S. products, such as flat steels, lamps, pork legs and shoulders, sausages, and food preparations. The EU has promised to institute tariffs of about $3.3 billion on products like bourbon, jeans and motorcycles.
Many Democratic and Republican lawmakers have criticized the move. Like Sasse, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) said the tariffs on steel and aluminum imports would have “damaging consequences” for Americans.
“Tariffs on steel and aluminum imports are a tax hike on Americans,” he said in a statement.