Daily Kos
Political analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation

Sunday | June 02, 2002

Pandering to big steel could be costly

Delicious irony. The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Bush's decision to increase steel tariffs is having unintended benefits:

"Less than three months after the Bush administration suggested its stiff new tariffs on steel imports would have only a limited impact on prices, the levies are sending waves of pain through America's manufacturing sector -- including steep price increases, supply shortages and layoff threats."

"'The Bush administration just assumed that people could eat this -- that it would be no big deal,' says Charles Blum, a consultant who advises U.S. middlemen who buy and sell steel domestically. 'But it has become a big deal very fast..."

"The tariff decision unleashed a barrage of withering international criticism and reprisal threats, but it now appears that President Bush also may pay a domestic political price. Anger is spreading across the Industrial Belt as manufacturers complain that the president's bid to help one industry is hurting hundreds of companies that employ far more workers."

And Bush will face more pain. The European Union is on the verge of placing retaliatory tariffs on American goods from politically sensitive states, including such products as Florida orange juice. Those tariffs will place an unwanted spotlight on Bush's anti-trade, politically transparent moves.

Posted June 02, 2002 11:47 AM | Comments (0)


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