Trump threatens 100% tariffs on Mexican-made cars by Chinese companies

Former President Donald Trump said he would slap a 100% tariff on cars made by Chinese companies in Mexico, double the tariff he previously said he would impose on cars made south of the U.S. border.

Trump directly addressed Chinese President Xi Jinping during a rally speech in Dayton, Ohio, on Saturday when he threatened the tariffs.

“Those big gigantic car factories that you’re building now in Mexico and you think you’re going to get that – don’t hire Americans and you’re going to sell the car to us, no,” Trump said. “We are going to charge a 100% fee on every car that comes into the parking lot.”

Trump continued by saying it would be a “bloodbath” if he did not win this year’s US presidential election.

Earlier this month, Trump threatened a 50% tariff on Chinese cars. He has also proposed tariffs of as much as 60% on all Chinese goods and 10% on goods made anywhere in the world. He said he is not concerned about retaliation from China or other countries.

“You fuck us, and we’ll fuck you,” he said. “It’s very simple, very honest.”

As president, Trump focused heavily on the idea that the US was being ripped off by bad trade deals and deception, embarking on a trade war with China in 2018 that saw round after round of escalation as the two countries imposed tariffs on each other’s products.

Trump’s major trade actions included the trade war with China; broad implementation of tariffs; replacing the North American Free Trade Agreement with the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement; and ending the Trans-Pacific Partnership multilateral trade deal negotiated under President Barack Obama.

However, international trade and auto industry experts said at the time that the Trump administration’s signature trade policies did little to restore U.S. manufacturing jobs and achieve its goal of balancing the trade deficit. accomplish. The US trade deficit in 2020 was even higher at $678.7 billion than when Trump took office: $502.3 billion. During Biden’s presidency, interest rates continued to rise, ending 2023 at $773.4 billion.

However, the trade deficit with China fell from $347 billion when Trump took office to $308 billion in 2020. Although it rose again in the first years of the Biden administration, it fell to $280 billion by the end of 2023.

Michigan employment stood at 617,100 when Trump took office in January 2017, according to federal data. It peaked at 634,200 in December 2018. In January 2020, manufacturing jobs fell to 628,700, and then to 623,700 in February 2020.

Trump’s proposed 100% tariff on the price of a Chinese automaker’s vehicles assembled in Mexico escalates threats the former president made on Feb. 27 during Michigan’s presidential primary, which he won handily.

“I’m going to put tariffs in place so that we start making the cars in this country, and not in China and all these other countries,” Trump told WFDF-AM (910) Superstation host Justin Barclay on the morning of the primaries. .

Trump clinched the Republican Party’s presidential nomination on Tuesday evening, allowing him to focus his full attention on a rematch with President Joe Biden in November. Biden won enough delegates for the Democratic nomination on Tuesday.

In recent weeks, Biden and one of his top surrogates, Shawn Fain, president of the United Auto Workers, have clashed with Trump over manufacturing policy. Biden has highlighted the UAW’s gains following a six-week strike by General Motors, Stellantis and Ford Motor Co. last fall, while Trump has turned his attention to Chinese automakers investing in Mexican factories.

More: Biden praises deal to reopen idled Stellantis plant in State of the Union address

More: UAW President, Trump clashes over the future of the auto industry

Despite facing four criminal charges, Trump has only tightened his grip on the Republican Party during his third White House run. The Republican National Committee is now led by three close allies, including his daughter-in-law Lara Trump as co-chair. The uproar resulted in more than sixty employees being laid off on Monday.

Trump’s rally on Saturday took him to a once traditional swing state, where his populist message won him easy victories in the 2016 and 2020 presidential elections.

This year, Ohio also hosts a Senate race that will be crucial to Democratic hopes of retaining control of the chamber. Republicans face a three-way battle in the state’s March 19 primary for a candidate to face Democrat Sherrod Brown in the general election.

Trump has backed technology executive Bernie Moreno for the Senate seat, putting him at odds with Ohio’s Republican governor, Mike DeWine, who has backed Matt Dolan, a moderate who did not seek Trump’s support. Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose is also a candidate.

Moreno, who attended Saturday’s rally, called Trump a “great American.” Trump also lashed out at Dolan, calling him “the next Mitt Romney” and claiming he embraced “woke left-wing lunatics.”

Trump demonstrated his hold on Ohio Republicans in the Senate race two years ago when he endorsed J.D. Vance, giving him a victory in the Republican Party’s primaries and a victory in the general election.

The Detroit News contributed.

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