Former President Donald Trump has unveiled his “Trump Reciprocal Trade Act” as part of his “Agenda47” plan to make a comeback to the White House. In a video released today, he outlined the tariff plan, which aims to bring back jobs and wealth to the United States, stimulate the economy, and reduce the country’s reliance on China and other nations.
Under the act, Trump proposed two options for other countries: either eliminate tariffs on U.S. goods or pay the United States significant sums of money, potentially amounting to hundreds of billions of dollars. Trump emphasized the principle of reciprocity, stating that if a country imposes a 100% or 200% tariff on American-made goods, the United States would respond with an equivalent tariff. The aim is to establish a fair trade environment where tariffs are balanced.
The act also grants Trump the authority to negotiate reductions in tariffs on foreign goods if other countries agree to reciprocate by lowering their own tariffs.
According to the campaign, the legislation aligns with the views of 91% of conservatives and even 75% of Democrats who support reciprocal tariffs as a means of safeguarding American workers. Historical precedent exists for such a policy, as the United States previously imposed tariffs on over 95% of all imports, with an average tariff of 37% between 1816 and 1947. During this period, tariffs on foreign goods provided over 80% of the government’s revenue, reducing reliance on domestic taxes.
Trump’s campaign argues that the United States currently faces immense import pressure due to its comparatively low tariffs. For instance, China’s average tariff is 341% higher than that of the United States, while the European Union’s is 50% higher. The global average tariff rate also exceeds twice that of the United States.
The Trump plan suggests that raising tariffs on foreign countries would lead to reduced taxes for American workers, businesses, and families. Additionally, Trump pledges to revoke China’s most favored nation trade status, claiming that it is unfair for China to receive preferential treatment while undermining American national security interests.
Trump criticizes President Joe Biden for running record trade deficits and believes these deficits have resulted in substantial job losses and the loss of trillions of dollars in wealth. Trump aims to address this issue and level the playing field for American workers. He argues that the Biden administration has undone the progress achieved during his presidency.
The new legislation anticipates that other countries will respond by dropping their tariffs, but Trump suggests that even if they do not, the United States will benefit economically. The act aims to support farmers in agricultural states like Iowa and manufacturers nationwide by breaking down barriers to American products and ending the exploitation of the United States by other countries.
Trump asserts that the United States has been disrespected in trade and various other areas, but with the implementation of the act, that era will come to an end.