Sen. Tom Carper met Oct. 21 with representatives from four small and mid-sized manufacturing businesses in Delaware to discuss the impacts of the Trump administration’s trade policy decisions and tariffs.
Joining him for the roundtable discussion at Delaware Technical Community College’s Stanton Campus were representatives from Solvay Specialty Polymers, B&W Tek, United Cocoa Processors and Eagle Group.
Carper discussed his recent work on legislation that works to support consumers, business owners, retailers, manufacturers and farmers in Delaware and across the country: the Kaine-Carper Reclaiming Congressional Authority Act and the Carper-Toomey Trade Certainty Act.
“It has been 19 months since the White House and China first began trading tariff threats, and businesses across the U.S. — including right here at home in Delaware — are feeling the effects,” said Carper. “Tariffs should only be imposed as a part of sound and strategic trade policy, not levied on a whim. This isn’t a partisan issue. Tariffs impact every corner of our country, red states and blue states alike. That is why I have introduced two bills this year that will help us put American consumers and our economy ahead of politics — no matter who is in the White House. It’s so important, as we continue pushing for bipartisan solutions in Washington, that the voices of business owners are heard because they are the ones on the front lines. We cannot allow those who drive our economy to be collateral damage in the ongoing trade wars.”
The Kaine-Carper Reclaiming Congressional Trade Authorities Act of 2019 would:
— Restore the Constitutional Article I authority provided to Congress to oversee international trade matters;
— Involve Congress more directly in ongoing negotiations over trade actions brought by the Administration; and
— Require the administration to assess the economic impact of potential tariffs before they can take effect to better inform trade decisions.
The Carper-Toomey Trade Certainty Act of 2019, which was introduced following President Trump’s threat in May 2019 to impose tariffs on all goods from Mexico for issues unrelated to trade, would clarify Congress’ intent by specifying that the International Emergency Economic Powers Act does not grant the president the power to impose tariffs or quotas on imported goods.
Since the president started his trade war, retaliation from trading partners has made exports from Delaware $14.8 million more expensive for foreign buyers, which reduces our country’s competitiveness compared to more affordable exports from other countries. In Delaware, trade with Mexico supports 15,000 jobs. In 2017, the First State imported $183 million of goods from Mexico and exported $327 million of goods.