Trump accuses China of using 'vicious' trade tactics

Devin Lawrence
July 26, 2018

In the first acknowledgment by President Donald Trump's administration that his aggressive trade actions are hurting Americans, the government on Tuesday announced $12 billion in aid for farmers who have been the primary targets of retaliation.

Mr Trump has said his tariffs - which he described on Tuesday in a tweet as "the greatest" - are meant to pressure countries to change their policies toward United States exports.

"Countries that have treated us unfairly on trade for years are all coming to Washington to negotiate", Trump tweeted.

But the agriculture industry, which draws about 20% of its income from exports, said the president's approach is hurting demand for its goods and causing long term damage to relationships with buyers.

The organization will also deploy digital and print advertising as well as town hall events starting during the August congressional recess to get the attention of lawmakers back in their home states and districts.

On the other side, Democratic Senator Tammy Baldwin released a statement, saying the state of Wisconsin has already lost 500 dairy farmers in the a year ago.

EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom, who is accompanying Juncker, expressed some optimism that a solution could still be found, but also said the EU is drawing up a list of $20 billion in USA products to be targeted for retaliation if the trip fails. The two leaders did not, for instance, strike a pact that would bring down existing import fees.

"We are growing in Mexico, and that's great". The three countries retaliate with tariffs on a total of nearly $20bn in USA products.

West Tennessee farmers react to agricultural tariffs put in place on their products sold to other countries. Responding in kind, Beijing slapped tariffs worth $34 billion on 545 American goods.

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"We just want it to be a level playing field for our farmers, for our manufacturers, for everybody", Trump said, suggesting the European Union could also be a "big beneficiary" of a revised trading agreement.

The Commission president prepared for his D.C. visit by coordinating on strategy with key European Union leaders: Germany's Angela Merkel, France's Emmanuel Macron, the Netherlands' Mark Rutte, and Austria's Sebastian Kurz.

"We have to work together".

The response to the announcement was mixed, with many legislators criticizing the plan, calling it "welfare for farmers", and farm groups pleading for a more lasting solution. Remember, we are the "piggy bank" that's being robbed. It should also be noted that more of the German automobiles sold in the USA are made in the US than imported.

"Sales have been great ever since 2015", she said.

"This will not sustain farmers; this will help farmers, but not a long-term fix by any means", Mensink said. "Even if the Republicans lose some of their seats, Trump is unlikely to make dramatic changes to his foreign policies", Pan said.

According to Eric Bohl, Director of Public Affairs and Advocacy for the Missouri Farm Bureau, such moves take money right out of farmer's pockets. "The answer is remove the tariffs".

Ben Sasse, R-Neb., said the administrations trade war "is cutting the legs out from under farmers and White House's "plan" is to spend $12 billion on gold crutches".

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