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GOP senator: 'We have to keep going' with Trump's trade war even if it causes a recession

Millionaire Sen. Rick Scott also called for more tax cuts to offset the costs of the trade war.

By Oliver Willis - August 12, 2019
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Rick Scott

Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL) endorsed the continuation of Trump’s destructive trade war, even if it leads America into an economic recession.

Scott was asked in a Monday interview on CNBC what his stance would be on the trade war “if it starts to push the U.S. economy into recession.”

“I think we’ve got to keep going down this path,” Scott said, describing the trade war as “the only chance” of getting China to open up its markets.

Thus far, the trade war has completely failed to get China to bend to Trump’s will, and negotiations between the two countries continue to fail.

Instead, the trade war continues to slam farmers who can no longer get their products sold in China.

At the same time, families are experiencing increased costs as tariffs are added to vital goods. Products like shoes and toys now cost more because of the policy.

Scott’s proposed remedy for this ongoing problem is a well-worn Republican response: tax cuts.

“Anything we raise in tariffs, we should give back to the rank and public in tax reductions,” Scott told CNBC.

Trump has often claimed that China is paying the U.S. for tariffs. But in reality, those costs paid by companies importing goods to America are simply being passed on to consumers.

“All of the U.S. tariffs have been passed to U.S. importers, U.S. retailers, U.S. consumers,” Princeton economist Stephen Redding told NBC earlier in the month.

Tax cuts have often been a go-to for Scott, and the multimillionaire passed tax cuts that aided his own bottom line when he was governor of Florida. But the proposal is unlikely to alleviate the damage from the trade war or help the families it is affecting.

Republicans made tax cuts central to their legislative efforts in Trump’s first year. Those cuts, targeted at the ultra-wealthy and large corporations, did not substantially help economic growth despite grandiose promises from Republicans.

The trade war hasn’t been good for the economy or “easy” to win as Trump once claimed, but even if it leads into a recession his Republican allies like Scott remain firmly on board.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.


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