Tennessee Sen. Lamar Alexander on Thursday bashed President Donald Trump's steel and aluminum tariffs as "disappointing news for Tennessee workers."
"President [George W.] Bush's similar steel tariffs in 2002 backfired and proved that such tariffs destroy many more U.S. manufacturing jobs than they save," the third-term Republican said in a statement.
He noted Trump's threat last week to impose the duties led Electrolux, the Swedish-based maker of home appliances, to freeze a $250 million expansion at its Springfield plant — "even though 100 percent of the steel Electrolux uses is produced in the United States."
He said Electrolux officials told him Trump's tariffs on imported steel would "raise prices on all steel sold in the United States and make it more difficult for U.S.-based manufacturing plants to compete with foreign manufacturers."
President Trump signed proclamations Thursday imposing duties of 25 percent on imported steel and 10 percent on aluminum that will take effect in 15 days.
The tariffs will not initially apply to Canada and Mexico, the president said, adding security and trade partners could negotiate to seek exemptions.
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