He is the first president to stand up to modern China’s egregious trade practices, which has included all kinds of cheating, including currency manipulation, use of slave labor, and stealing intellectual property.
This deal begins to address some of that. It also keeps many sanctions on the Chinese until more gets done. Meanwhile, China will buy some $200 billion of U.S. products.
What all those conservatives and business-types who weep about the tariffs ignore is that they are a tool, not an end in themselves. They are a tool that is working against an economy, China’s which is struggling and must back down.
“Oh, tariffs are bad!” they bellow. Well of course tariffs are bad. It’s the result that stems from them that President Trump is looking for.
It’s like saying, “Oh, cutting people is bad!” Yes, it is. Unless you are a surgeon removing a tumor or fix a broken arm.
President Trump said he would get this done. He got it done. Average American workers understand the China peril, even if Washington does not. Trump will get tremendous credit from voters for this.
This is why Americans – and yes conservatives, evangelicals, and what was once called the “moral majority – put President Trump in office. Despite his deep flaws, he is a man who is able to stand up to pressure, who despite all the press about him wanting to be liked doesn’t care what people think, and is willing to do what is right. To resist many of his own economic advisors, the Washington establishment, the lobbyists, and the press and do what he thinks is right for American workers. American people got this, even if elite opinion did not.
I remember when I was growing up, U.S. Steel, that was the ultimate company. And today, you have so many closed plants. And the NAFTA deal was a disaster for our country. The WTO has been a disaster for this country, for our country. In fact, the rise of China, economically, was — if you look at it — directly equal to the date of the opening of the World Trade Organization. It has been great for China and terrible for the United States, and great for other countries. But terrible for the United States.
So we’re talking about it, and two of the groups that I want to do some very fast action will probably have everything completed by next week. We’ll be imposing tariffs on steel imports, and tariffs on aluminum imports. And you’re going to see a lot of good things happen. You’re going to see expansions of the companies.
What’s been allowed to go on for decades is disgraceful. It’s disgraceful. And when it comes to a time when our country can’t make aluminum and steel — and somebody said it before, and I will tell you, you almost don’t have much of a country. Because without steel and aluminum, your country is not the same. And we need it.
We need it even for defense, if you think. I mean, we need it for defense. We need great steelmakers, great aluminum makers for defense.
So we’ll probably see you sometime next week. We’ll be signing it in. And you will have protection for the first time in a long while, and you’re going to regrow your industries. That’s all I’m asking. You have to regrow your industries.