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‘Mindbogglingly stupid’: Conservative editor lists five reasons Trump’s new Mexico tariffs make no sense

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On Thursday, President Donald Trump announced via Twitter that he would be imposing a new 5 percent tariff on Mexican goods in order to force them to stop migrants crossing the U.S. border:

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But Philip Klein, editor of the conservative Washington Examiner, blasted Trump’s plan as “reckless and mindbogglingly stupid” for several reasons.

“First, in the most direct way, raising tariffs on Mexico will mean a tax increase of up to 25% on American families and businesses purchasing any products from Mexico, one of the U.S.’ leading trade partners,” wrote Klein. “In 2018, Americans imported $346.5 billion in goods from Mexico, so on that basis it would amount to a nearly $87 billion tax increase. It also will punish industries that will be affected by inevitable retaliatory tariffs.”

“Secondly, this threat comes as the Trump administration was jump-starting the approval process for the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement that Trump previously touted as a major trade victory, but that has yet to be officially ratified,” Klein continued. “This will surely disrupt that process.’

“Thirdly, the whole justification for the previous administration’s tariffs has been that they were all part of a broader strategy to negotiate better trade deals,” said Klein. “Yet in this case, Trump is trying to lump trade in with cracking down on illegal immigration, which is a separate issue even if it could be argued there is a relationship between the two.”

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“Fourthly, it’s difficult to see how this would facilitate containing illegal Mexican immigration,” Klein said. “The surest way that Mexico has to reducing the desire of Mexicans to leave for America is to improve the Mexican economy, which would be immensely more difficult in the midst of a trade war with the U.S.”

“Fifthly, it’s unclear what the metric will be for determining whether ‘the Illegal Immigration problem is remedied,'” added Klein. “Does that mean no illegal immigration from Mexico? A reduction by a certain percentage? I suppose we’ll have to leave that to the White House staffers tasked with translating Trump’s insane tweets into official policy language.”

“Congress should immediately intercede to block this reckless policy by reclaiming its traditional power over tariffs,” Klein concluded. “House Democrats should pass something and force Senate Republicans to either rebuke Trump’s policy, or answer for their cowardice.”

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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Trump goes into full attack against another American company — Ford motors

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President Donald Trump went off on another Twitter rant Wednesday, taking aim at another American company.

"Henry Ford would be very disappointed if he saw his modern-day descendants wanting to build a much more expensive car, that is far less safe and doesn’t work as well, because execs don’t want to fight California regulators. Car companies should know that when this Administration’s alternative is no longer available, California will squeeze them to a point of business ruin. Only reason California is now talking to them is because the Feds are giving a far better alternative, which is much better for consumers!" Trump tweeted.

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Rudy Giuliani sneaked off to meet Ukrainian officials in Madrid about Biden conspiracy theories: report

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On Wednesday, The New York Times reported that President Donald Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani secretly traveled to Madrid in recent weeks to meet with a top aide of new Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to go fishing for dirt on Democrats.

One of the key focuses of Giuliani's phone calls and in-person meetings was to try to dig up evidence that former Vice President Joe Biden acted improperly to remove a Ukrainian prosecutor investigating an energy company his son was invested in — which has been broadly discredited as conspiracy theories. He also tried to hunt for proof that Ukrainian officials colluded with Democrats to hurt Trump's campaign in 2016, a claim which is not supported by evidence.

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At least eight prison officials knew Epstein wasn’t supposed to be left alone — but they did it anyway: report

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On Wednesday, the Washington Post reported that at least eight staffers at the Bureau of Prisons were aware that arrested hedge fund manager Jeffrey Epstein could be a risk to himself if left unsupervised — raising further questions about why exactly guards left him to his own devices on the night that he allegedly hanged himself.

Investigators reportedly believe that at least some of these officials were aware that he had been left alone. It is unclear why nobody intervened, and the Justice Department is continuing with its investigation. Attorney General William Barr recently ordered the removal of the acting director of the Bureau of Prisons.

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