(Washington, D.C.) – Tariffs Hurt the Heartland spokesman and former Congressman Charles Boustany released the following statement on tonight’s State of the Union Address. In the address, the President called for additional authority to impose tariffs, including passage of the Reciprocal Trade Act. The President also updated Congress on progress in negotiations with China. If the U.S. and China fail to reach an agreement by March 1st the Trump Administration has said it will increase tariffs on $200 billion in imports to 25%.
Call for Passage of the Reciprocal Trade Act
“The fact that this bill is dead on arrival in the House and Senate is a good sign that Congress has had enough. It is encouraging, but shouldn’t be surprising, that a bill abdicating Congress’s ability to oversee tariff increases has attracted so little support. A new report showed that the bill will cost American consumers $60 billion every year. With markets reeling, soybeans rotting, and small businesses paying record tariffs, the last thing we should do is give the administration unchecked power to plunge the country further into the depths of a global trade war.”
Status of Negotiations with China
“We hope that the President is right that a deal is within reach, and we are encouraged by signs of progress. The stakes couldn’t be higher. If both sides fail to reach an agreement and the administration increases tariffs further on March 1, it won’t just be markets that will be in turmoil. It will also be American small businesses, farmers, retailers, and consumers.
“There is no patience left for this trade war. In just the past week, we have seen movement on two new bills in Congress that would curtail the President’s authority to impose tariffs. These bills are gaining steam because the pain from the trade war is mounting in American communities large and small. Tomorrow, our campaign will release a new report showing that tariffs, and the potential escalation of tariffs, mean job losses and reduced wages. It’s time for the President to reach a deal that takes tariff increases off the table for good, ends the threat of new tariffs and brings an end to the tariffs we are facing right now.”
NOTE TO NEWS MEDIA: Tariffs Hurt the Heartland is hosting a fly-in of over 100 businesses and farmers that will meet with over 150 Congressional offices over the next two days. As part of the fly-in the campaign will release a new study on the impact of tariffs on jobs, an average American family, and GDP. The study will be released at a press conference at NOON tomorrow in Dirksen 608with fly-in participants as well as Senators Pat Toomey (R-PA), Mark Warner (D-VA), Tom Carper (D-DE) and Ron Johnson (R-WI).