White House: Unlike Trump, Biden’s China Tariffs Only Hit Areas ‘Where We Import Very Little from China’

On Friday’s broadcast of MSNBC’s “The Last Word,” White House Council of Economic Advisers Chair Jared Bernstein stated that the tariffs on China that President Joe Biden announced are different from the approach of 2024 Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump because Biden’s tariffs only apply to areas “where we import very little from China.”

Bernstein said, “I think it’s the difference between the narrowly-targeted, very precisely-targeted tariffs that President Biden has put in place, in areas where we export – where we import very little from China. In fact, a little bit less than 4% of our imports, as regards to the recent announcement that the President has made. When it comes to electric vehicles, where the President took that tariff rate up to 100% for Chinese EVs, we import less than 400 million with an M. So, that’s virtually nothing with an economy that’s $28 trillion in size. On the other hand, the former President has a set of tariffs that are incredibly sweeping and the opposite of targeted, a 60% tariff on everything from China and 10% on all imports. Now, let’s stop calling it a tariff. Let’s call it a tax. It is a tax on consumer spending, that will hit middle-class families and have exactly the opposite effect on inflation of everything we’ve talked about so far in this President’s agenda. … Even estimates by former members of the Trump team tell us that that will raise inflation. So, exactly the wrong direction to go on that.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett


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