Republican "Nightmare": Midterm Risk Rising
Mike Mish Shedlock
CNN Money reports Steel Industry 'Happy with Tariffs'.
I will not link to articles that have autoplay ads that cannot be shut off so let's move on to the rest of the story.
Regarding Trump's alleged "one time" farm aid bill Sanford says "It's a Nightmare"
Rep. Mark Sanford, a fiscal conservative from South Carolina, said the farm aid was "destructive" and "doubling down on bad policy." He added that it calls into question what Republicans stand for these days.
Sanford said it's likely that other industries would also be seeking help.
“The logical questions is, if it’s good enough for the farm sector, why wouldn’t it be for other sectors?" he said. "I think there are going to be a lot of ‘me too’ questions that are going to be raised in light of this package."
From a fiscal point of view, he described the situation as a "nightmare."
“It’s a nightmare, because not only are you increasing taxes — because a tariff is a tax — now you’re doubling down on harmful taxpayer effect in that not only are you increasing taxes, you’re increasing spending as well with the aid package.”
Five Republicans Senators Chime In, One Calls it 1929
It's not just Sanford, Other GOP Lawmakers Upset with Trump's Trade Policy.
- “I want to know what we’re going to say to the automobile manufacturers and the petrochemical manufacturers and all the other people who are being hurt by tariffs,” said Sen. John Kennedy, R-La. “You’ve got to treat everybody the same.”
- Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., said the plan would spend billions on “gold crutches,” adding, “America’s farmers don’t want to be paid to lose — they want to win by feeding the world. This administration’s tariffs and bailouts aren’t going to make America great again, they’re just going to make it 1929 again.”
- Sen. Jerry Moran, R-Kan., said the proposal was raised a month ago when senators visited the White House for a broad discussion on trade. He said the lawmakers told the president “that our farmers want markets, and not really a payment from government. And he said, ‘I’m surprised, I’ve never heard of anybody who didn’t want a payment from government.’”
- Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., who has been critical of the president in the past, said the tariffs “are a massive tax increase on American consumers and businesses, and instead of offering welfare to farmers to solve a problem they themselves created, the administration should reverse course and end this incoherent policy.”
- Republican Sen. Charles Grassley, whose family operates a farm in eastern Iowa, said the administration’s move was “encouraging for the short term” but farmers needed “markets and opportunity, not government handouts.”
U.S. Farmers Gave Trump's plan a cool reception: ‘Trade, Not Aid’ the farmers said.
Bipartisan Bill to Delay Auto Tariffs
In one aspect, the point is moot because Trump never would have signed such a bill. Also, Trump agreed to a trade escalation truce with the EU.
Yet, the point still stands as Republican senators were willing to deal with Democrats in open warfare on Trump's trade policy.,
Republican Fears Not Erased
Even after Trump backed down with Europe, the Administration Has to Ease Republican Worries About Trade Fights.
Trump advisers got an earful from angry lawmakers on Capitol Hill, who blasted the administration’s approach, criticized the Europe pact as weak, demanded faster relief for ailing constituents and pledged to ramp up efforts to tie Mr. Trump’s hands in shaping trade policy going forward.
“There was a lot of pushback on the strategy,” said Rep. Andy Barr (R., Ky.), following a closed meeting between House Republicans and two administration officials—Lawrence Kudlow, head of the National Economic Council, and Peter Navarro, a White House trade adviser.
Mr. Barr is one of 24 GOP representatives whose re-election this November is rated a toss-up by the Cook Political Report, and he complained that bourbon makers in his district were being hurt by European retaliation for U.S. steel tariffs. “We want to know when we’re going to get a solution.”
With Republicans growing increasingly worried about losing control of the House this fall, fears aggravated by polls showing the unpopularity of Trump trade policies, Rep. Bill Huizenga (R., Mich.) read aloud to the White House advisers a text from a tool-and-die maker in his district who was facing higher raw-material costs because of the aluminum and steel tariffs. “I was making sure that they heard the message that this is not just uncomfortable—it’s painful and it’s damaging,” Mr. Huizenga later told reporters. He said that because his district also includes farmers, who are getting squeezed by the retaliatory tariffs, “we’re getting it coming and going in western Michigan.”
Why Trump Backed Down
Trump backed down with his trade war with the EU only because enough Republican Senators were willing to publicly call him out.
Trump gained nothing from that back down other than further adding to trade war stupidity.
Mind the Independents
Die hard Republicans and Democrats will vote for their party. The midterm elections will depend on what the swing voters will decide.
Trump's tariff policy will hurt Republicans.
That has been my contention since the beginning. A recent NBC/WSJ Poll suggests the same thing.
Senate and House at Risk
It is widely understood there is nearly always mid-term risk in the House.
These stats emphasize the point.
I am sticking with my assessment that Republicans are at risk of losing the House and even the Senate over Trump's absurd trade policy.
All it will take for the Republicans to lose BOTH the house and Senate is a sustained economic downturn and/or a collapse in the stock market.
I can hear sarcastic chant now "That's all? "
Yes, that's all. Both are possible. Housing looks as if it has peaked, the Fed is hiking, and technology is not acting well to say the least.
I share emails every day with about six people,. One of them has been a staunch Republican for something like forever. That person is now so sick of Trump's "jackassedness" that he or she is now contributing to Democrats.
This is just an anecdote, and anecdotes do not constitute data, but I cannot help but think of independents and the above poll.
Yes, polls and opinions can change, but they can also change for the worse (for Republicans), and I believe that will happen.
Once again, I voted for Trump and would do so again. I am merely sharing an opinion that many Republicans are sick of this guy and his tactics. If you disagree please explain the open defiance by six Republican senators.
I admit I cannot stand Trump's trade policy, but if there was public approval, I would not be making these mid-term calls.
Regardless, it's still early. Only the November election counts.
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Mike "Mish" Shedlock