Largest U.S. business group attacks Trump on tariffs

Anna Jefferson
July 4, 2018

The group's analysis of the harm each US state could suffer from retaliation by USA trading partners painted a gloomy picture that could bring pressure on the White House from Republicans ahead of congressional elections in November.

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Trump enraged Canada and other USA allies by declaring imported steel and aluminium a threat to America's national security.

Trump has also tried to pressure Canada and Mexico into agreeing to rewrite the 24-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement to shift more auto production and investment to the United States.

Canada has begun imposing tariffs on $12.6 billion in US goods as retaliation for the Trump administration's new taxes on steel and aluminum imported to the United States.

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In the interview, Trump again threatened to impose tariffs on imported vehicles, saying, "The cars are the big ones".

"I never want to advocate for nations putting up tariffs that thwart economic growth and thwart job creation, either here or elsewhere, but that's what's happening between the United States and Canada", he said.

After Heinz shut down a factory in Ontario in 2014, French's - known in the US for its mustard - became an alternative ketchup-maker in Canada.

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland has said she spoke with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer six times last week and that she expects NAFTA talks to move into a higher gear this summer.

Sanders said that the tactic has only hurt American workers.

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"We will not escalate and we will not back down", she said, adding that this trade action was the strongest Ottawa has taken since World War II.

"You know, I've been right across the country all day, starting in Leamington, Ontario, through Regina, Saskatchewan, and ending here, and the sun is a long way from setting, so we've got a lot of time to party still".

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks at the G7 Summit in Canada on June 9, 2018.

The phone call between the two leaders was the first to be publicly disclosed since Trump blasted Trudeau as "very dishonest and weak" at the end of the Group of Seven leaders meeting in Canada earlier this month. "Everybody said, 'Uh, can we get on to another subject?"'

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