Just who was President Trump's tariff redux supposed to impress?
On Thursday night, Trump tweeted his intention to impose a five percent tariff on all imports from Mexico starting June 10. And almost immediately, everyone but Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) lined up to tear holes in it.
The tariffs would increase by five percent every month until peaking at 25 percent in September, and will remain "until Mexico substantially stops the illegal inflow of aliens coming through its territory," a White House statement clarified. Stock markets took the news hard, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500, and Nasdaq all sliding about a percent when they opened Friday morning. Economists also pointed out how the tariffs could push prices on cars, avocados and other American essentials through the roof.
Lawmakers cited all those reasons when voicing their tariff opposition on Friday, with Sens. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) and Rob Portman (R-Ohio) specifically suggesting the tariffs could jeopardize the USMCA trade deal Trump has spent months trying to pass. Senate Finance Committee Chair Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) issued perhaps the harshest blow, reminding Trump that "trade policy and border security are separate issues" in a statement and calling the tariffs "a misuse of presidential tariff authority." Even Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell didn't quite say Trump was on the right track.
But Graham? Well, he's on Trump's side yet again. Kathryn Krawczyk