If Tariffs Create U.S. Jobs, Why Not Introduce Taxes On All Imports?
When President Donald Trump announced his latest tariffs on steel and aluminum, Republicans, conservative activists, and free market organizations were quick to denounce the move, arguing (rightfully so) that it will backfire and hurt Americans more than the exporting countries.
The president and many of his supporters espouse the 18th century mercantilist dogma that the 25 percent levy on steel will bring back American jobs and resuscitate an industry of yesteryear. Even though production and automation have harmed the domestic sector far more than imports have, they still think American steel will return to its dominance of the 1950s.
Well, let’s say, for the sake of argument, that it’s true. Tariffs on steel will ramp up employment from just over 100,000 to nearly 700,000 (the height in the 1960s).
Then why not add new taxes, restrictions, and quotas on other imports?