Tariffs Looming over 2020 Election

Promoted from the diaries by streiff. Promotion does not imply endorsement.

If you watched any of the recent Democratic debates, I’m sure you were disappointed in most of the policy discussion, just as I was. Reparations were discussed, along with pipe dream of free college tuition for all and the Green New Deal. Not to mention the Democrats end goal of Medicare for All, which would effectively bankrupt our country. 

Trade was discussed among the candidates, but for only a short time. If you ask me, trade should have taken up a much larger portion of the debate. Nothing is affecting our economy more right now than trade issues, specifically tariffs.

President Trump’s economy is booming, and even Democrats can’t deny this fact. Although they certainly tried. Unemployment is at its lowest levels in a half-century. After years of failing to do it themselves, Democrats – the self-proclaimed party of minorities who are pulling out all the stops to stymie President Trump’s economic agenda – have watched unemployment among minorities fall to historically low levels thanks to the leadership of our president. 

All of this progress could be undone, though, if tariffs remain in place for much longer. While it is commendable that the president is standing up to China, the tariffs are having real-world effects on families, businesses, and farmers across the country. The majority of Americans believe the economy is doing well, but most also do not agree with our current tariff policies. And we have seen time and again that presidents are much more likely to be reelected in good economic times instead of bad. Economists across the board are predicting an economic downturn that’s going to be exacerbated by tariffs and the impact of these trade disputes.

It’s obvious the situation requires even more attention when you consider the states that tariffs are affecting the most – states like Ohio, Florida and Wisconsin – are also states that Trump won in 2016 and will need to win again in 2020 to secure reelection. 

In Ohio, a state the president held a rally in yesterday, farmers have been hit hard by tough weather conditions coupled with the sting of tariffs. China, one of our largest trading partners for agriculture, has been finding new producers to buy from due to tariffs. This has caused the dismantling of critical supply chains for farmers, which may never come back. Data from the group Tariffs Hurt the Heartland shows that tariffs could cost the state close to 77,000 jobs.

Florida, a state that President Trump carried by a narrow margin in 2016, has also been hurting from tariffs. Both the orange and cattle industries have been feeling the heat in the state, as evidenced by state lawmakers raising the issue this week. Florida businesses and taxpayers have also paid a whopping $603 million thus far in additional tariffs.

A reliably blue state in presidential elections since 1988, Wisconsin flipped to help elect President Trump in 2016 by just 22,000 votes. Harley Davidson, one of the state’s most iconic brands, shifted jobs out of the country to circumvent tariffs. The state is also a top producer of dairy in America, but the industry has felt the weight of tariffs as they have tried to grapple with tariffs on American cheese

President Trump has made great strides in unleashing the American economy from burdensome regulations and cultivating an environment for our industries to innovate and thrive. This could all come undone, though, if tariffs are not repealed – and soon. With the RNC summer meetings this week in Charlotte, the GOP and the president should rethink these policies if he wants to win a second term in the White House.  

We all know we need a second Trump term, as the Democratic debates clearly showed. But tariffs threaten to be an anchor on his campaign if he cannot come up with another policy to counter China and other manipulators of trade.

Trending on RedState Video