Joe Biden Plan Will Let Europe Decide Whether U.S. Puts Tariffs on China

Joe Biden Speaks at the National Urban League Conference Presidential Plenary - Indianapolis, IN - July 25, 2019
Adam Schultz / Biden for President

Democrat presidential candidate Joe Biden is promising to return the United States to a globalized economic model, suggesting that the fate of U.S. tariffs on China will depend on what Europe and Canada’s leaders want.

For years now, President Donald Trump has followed through on his commitment to impose tariffs on foreign imports to boost American jobs and protect U.S. industries. Trump has imposed tariffs on billions of dollars worth of goods from China and put tariffs on Canadian aluminum and lumber as well as on European planes, cheeses, and wines.

Biden’s economic advisers, who have promised a “new approach to globalization,” said the former vice president would give U.S. allies like Europe and Canada veto power over whether Trump’s tariffs on China remain in place.

Reuters reports:

Democrat Joe Biden would immediately consult with America’s main allies before deciding on the future of U.S. tariffs on China, seeking “collective leverage” to strengthen his hand against Beijing if he is elected president, Biden top advisers said on Wednesday. [Emphasis added]

The advisers refused to say whether Biden would lift Trump’s tariffs on China:

The advisers declined to say whether the Democratic presidential candidate, if elected, would be inclined toward lifting the massive tariffs on China that Trump has used to fuel a trade war between the world’s two biggest economies. [Emphasis added]

“He’s not going to lock into any premature position before we see exactly what we’re inheriting,” Prescott said. “But consulting with allies is going to be a central part of that.” [Emphasis added]

In August, Biden indicated in an interview that he would end Trump’s tariffs on China, saying “We’re going after China in the wrong way.”

“The question is what is the appropriate behavior that they have to engage in international relations, in international trade with us, and they have to play by the international rules,” Biden said when asked if he would end Trump’s tariffs. “And what we have done is we have disarmed ourselves.”

Later, Biden campaign aides walked back Biden’s statement by saying he would “re-evaluate the tariffs upon taking office.” That reevaluation would include giving European and Canadian leaders a say in whether the U.S. protects its industries from subsidized Chinese imports.

Opposite to Biden’s plans, Trump has set forth on an “America First” trade agenda — a break from the free trade consensus in Washington, D.C., that has cost the U.S. 55,000 manufacturing plants and five million American manufacturing jobs since the late 1990s.

American manufacturing is vital to the U.S. economy, as every one manufacturing job supports an additional 7.4 American jobs in other industries.

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder

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