Farmers are reporting economic anxiety over President Donald Trump’s escalating trade wars as the midterm elections approach, The Bismarck Tribune reports.
China imposed a 25 percent soybean tariff as a retaliatory measure against Trump’s trade policies.
“Right now, I am the most scared I’ve ever been as to where the future of farming is going,” explained Randy Richards, the Steele County president for the North Dakota Farmers Union.
In 2016, Trump received more than twice as many votes as Hillary Clinton, besting her 63 percent to 27 percent.
While considered a reliably Republican state, chaos in the agrictulural industry may give a boost to Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) in North Dakota’s 2018 U.S. Senate race.
Sen. Heitkamp is being challenged in the November election by Rep. Kevin Cramer (R-ND).
“Cramer boasts about (how) he votes with the president all the time. I don’t think that’s good for North Dakota,” said Richards, who said he didn’t vote for Trump in 2016.
North Dakota exports over $1.4 billion in soybeans to China — which slapped a 25 percent tariff on soybeans.
Cramer, the Republican congressman challenging Heitkamp, has called for a “safety net plan” for farmers harmed by the GOP president’s policies.
In Minnesota, a former Trump supporter slammed the trade war.
“This isn’t just numbers on a sheet or percentage of trade or dollar value,” Michael Petefish, a Trump-backing farmer, told CNN. “This is multi-generational American families, your base, that you are now squarely putting into financial peril.”