A variety of industries are supporting the multimillion-dollar “Tariffs Hurt the Heartland” campaign by Americans for Free Trade, aiming to highlight the negative consequences of tariffs in advertising, town hall-style meetings beginning next week and reaching out to member of Congress.
Nearly 450 companies or industries hired trade issue lobbyists in 2017, up from about 100 when Trump took office in 2017. The anti-tariff movement stretches across industries and includes farming, technology and toy businesses.
Some businesses are concerned about rising costs of materials, including raw materials imported from other countries. Others, notably farmers, have expressed concern about retaliatory tariffs imposed on
Automobile manufacturers, auto dealers and vehicle parts makers will collaborate on a campaign in opposition to Trump’s tariffs, and last week a retail trade association, which includes Target and Walmart, brought 150 small retailers to meetings with members of Congress to discuss how tariffs can damage their businesses.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers, the Business Roundtable and the Koch brothers are also involved in individual lobbying efforts to promote free trade.
The imposition of $200 billion in tariffs is expected soon on Chinese imports, atop $50 billion in tariffs already in effect. Tariffs on steel and aluminum imports are also in force.
The “Tariffs Hurt the Heartland” campaign has identified
“We had hoped we wouldn’t get to this point, but there has been no sign of progress in the talks or de-escalation, simply more rhetoric about increasing tariffs, that’s not going to be good for the economy,” said Matthew Shay, president of the coalition member