Despite politicians in his own party, like House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), calling on him to ditch his plan to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum, President Trump said Monday he's "not backing down."
Last week, Trump surprised everyone by announcing he planned on implementing a 25 percent tax on steel imports and a 10 percent tax on aluminum imports. On Monday, Ryan released a statement saying he was "extremely worried about the consequences" of such a move, and his spokeswoman said there were concerns this would launch a "trade war," with Ryan "urging the White House to not advance with this plan."
A Canadian government official told Reuters that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called Trump on Monday, letting him know that if he imposed tariffs, it would be a roadblock in ongoing talks on updating NAFTA. Canada is the largest supplier of aluminum and steel to the U.S., and the official said during the call, Trudeau "forcefully defended" his country's workers and industries. Trump was not swayed by Ryan's concern or his conversation with Trudeau; in a meeting at the White House with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Trump said, "We're not backing down. I don't think you're going to have a trade war."