Economist Stephen Moore found himself at a loss for words on Tuesday morning when he called the decision by Harley-Davidson to move some manufacturing to Europe one of the "worst corporate decisions ever," only to have no answer when asked if they should lose millions of dollars to appease Donald Trump.
Speaking with CNN host Kate Bolduan, Moore said he was not a fan of Trump's tariffs but that companies should bite the bullet for the good of the country.
"The president hits Harley for 'surrendering too soon. Be patient,' he says," Bolduan proposed. "Did Harley have another option here?"
"Look, I was never in favor of some of these steel and aluminum tariffs in the first place," Moore demurred. "I think they were misguided. It was one of the points I made to the White House that, look you might be protecting some of those steel and aluminum jobs, but the millions of Americans who use aluminum and steel may be put at a disadvantage."
"So I was against the policy," he continued. "I have to say I think this decision by Harley-Davidson will go down as one of the worst corporate decisions ever -- this will be like New Coke. It will be a disaster for Harley-Davidson."
"I used to go to the Trump rallies, you know, when I was working on the campaign," he added. "There would be hundreds and hundreds of Harley-Davidson motorcycles parked on the side of those venues. Trump dominated the biker vote; they aren't going to be happy customers, they may gain some customers in Europe. I think they really put at risk their customer base in the United States by moving their facilities outside the United States."
"What do they do, just eat a $100 million loss?" a sarcastic Bolduan pressed the conservative economist, causing Financial Times columnist Rana Foroohar to start laughing.
"Well, look. Trump's point is these countries ---- I think are going to have to back down back down. Are we going to simply going to blink first? Trump has a very valid case that a lot of these countries have higher tariffs than we do. Trump ultimately wants a level playing field," Moore stuttered, never addressing the financial hit the company -- and their shareholders who have already seen their stock plummet over the last week -- would take by bowing to Trump.
You can watch the video below via CNN: