President Trump Wednesday signed an executive memorandum initiating a broad new investigation into how steel imports affect national security, an act that could lead to tariffs on foreign steel.
The move is aimed squarely and the Republican base that helped elect Trump, voters who in recent weeks have grown wary that the president is drifting away from them and toward Democrats and the Washington establishment and Wall Street types he ran against.
Trump called the signing an “historic day for American steel,” according to the press pool report, saying his administration would “fight for American workers and American-made steel, and that’s beginning immediately.” The Commerce Department investigation could be completed in as little as 50 days, Trump said.
In response to a shouted question about this will affect dealings with China on North Korea, Trump answered: “This has nothing to do with China. This has to do with worldwide, what’s happening. The dumping problem is a worldwide problem.”
Trump also spoke out strongly on Canada, referring to his trip this week to Wisconsin. “What they’ve done to our dairy farm workers is a disgrace. It’s a disgrace,” he said, saying it was a result of a NAFTA deal that has been “a disaster for our country.” He asserted: “We’ll be reporting back some time over the next two weeks as to NAFTA and what we’re going to do about it.”