During the presidential campaigns, Trump blasted policies that don’t punish companies for moving production overseas in order to avoid taxes and to pay foreign workers less money than they would be required to pay in the U.S. Trump promised to end those practices, to punish companies that did so, and that he would be the “greatest jobs president God ever made” because of that promise.
NEW: Harley-Davidson says it will not raise prices to cover costs of retaliatory EU tariffs that were brought in response to new Trump admin. tariffs; plans to shift production of motorcycles for EU destinations from the US to its international facilities to avoid tariff burden.
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) June 25, 2018
As it turns out, Trump is doing nothing of the kind. He has, instead, raised tariffs on allied countries because he insists that they’ve “taken advantage” of the U.S. The result of this will be more companies shifting production overseas to avoid those tariffs and taking away manufacturing jobs from American workers in the process.
Trump’s tariff on steel imports has caused the country’s remaining major nail producer to lose about 50% of its business in two weeks. Company laid off 60 temp workers. It could slash 200 more jobs by the end of July and be out of business around Labor Day https://t.co/yy4LhSgDYI
— Catherine Rampell (@crampell) June 22, 2018
The first company to announce that they’ll be shifting production overseas to avoid these tariffs is Harley-Davidson. Since the rise in tariffs has increased their costs in sending products overseas from six to 31 percent, it will cost them less to move the production and take jobs away from Americans, something they will need to do to continue to prosper as a business.
The Associated Press reports that:
‘President Donald Trump has used Harley-Davidson as an example of a U.S. business that is being harmed by trade barriers. Yet Harley has warned consistently against tariffs, saying they would negatively impact sales.’
Gee, I guess Trade Wars arent as simple as Trump believes. Now that Harley Davidson is shifting production to Europe because of Trump tariffs, how will Fox and Trumpers explain this one? Meh, they wont. They'll blame Obama.https://t.co/22IusnHBVz
— Kurt Eichenwald (@kurteichenwald) June 25, 2018
The motorcycle company is not the first American business to feel the effects of Trump’s ill-advised trade war. Farmers in states like Missouri and Illinois will suffer from China’s threat to stop importing soybeans from the U.S. because of the 25 percent rise in tariffs.
‘In early April, Beijing warned it might impose a 25 percent tariff on soybeans as well as duties on other major U.S. agricultural products, including corn, wheat, cotton and beef. It followed the Trump administration’s threaten to slap tariffs on Chinese products including consumer electronics and robotics…China buys roughly half of the U.S. soybean exports, and about 1 in 3 rows of soybeans grown on the nation’s farms goes to the world’s second-largest economy, according to the American Soybean Association.’
The dairy industry now faces substantial tariffs on products it exports as Mexico, Canada and other countries retaliate against President Trump's steel and aluminum tariffs https://t.co/xlYW7OaSlr
— The New York Times (@nytimes) June 25, 2018
The continued effects of Trump’s tariff wars remain to be seen, but one thing seems abundantly clear: the record-setting number of months of continued job growth under Obama, from which Trump has benefitted as president, will soon become a trend of the past.
Featured image via Getty/The Asahi Shimbun