AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka issued the following statement after President Donald Trump’s announcement on steel and aluminum tariffs this afternoon:
Wall Street’s hair is on fire over these tariffs because wealthy investors enrich themselves by closing mills and factories in the United States and moving them overseas. Using tariffs isn’t going to start a trade war. There’s been a war on working people for decades, and we have been getting our butts kicked. Just look at southwestern Pennsylvania if you want proof.
Tariffs are a commonsense mechanism for trade enforcement and the best way to start fighting back. Today, there are more than 435 tariffs already in place combating trade cheaters. This isn’t about partisan politics. The labor movement is a politically independent voice for workers who will stand up to Democratic and Republican politicians who are in the pockets of Wall Street billionaires. People may not like the way President Trump has rolled out these tariffs, but I applaud him for trying. The AFL-CIO has consistently made the case for the White House to use tariffs to crack down on trade law violations. Bottom line: We care about holding cheaters and bad actors accountable. We care about working people and our jobs.