Brown, Portman urge Trump administration to move quickly on a steel decision

Brown, Portman urge Trump administration to move quickly on a steel decision
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Ohio’s two senators on Friday demanded that the Trump administration expedite action on its investigation into whether steel imports are a threat to national security.

In a letter to Commerce Secretary Wilbur RossWilbur Louis RossCitizenship question drives uncertainty over 2020 census Under Trump, the machinery of trade enforcement still works What Trump didn't say in his State of the Union address MORE, Sen. Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownTrump accuses Dems of 'treasonous' behavior Former Ohio football star faces conservative rival in GOP primary fight Dems press Trump for 'Buy American' proposals in infrastructure plan MORE (D) and Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanGOP leader: Congress may settle for pared-down immigration deal Senate Republicans call on Trump to preserve NAFTA Key senator floats new compromise for immigration talks MORE (R) said the administration’s delay has allowed foreign competitors to dump steel into the U.S. market.

"Further postponement of the Section 232 investigation will invite a growing deluge of steel imports into the U.S. and cause even greater damage to the U.S. steel sector,” the senators wrote.

“We urge you to conclude the Section 232 steel investigation expeditiously to prevent the idling of additional U.S. steel facilities and the layoffs of more U.S. steelworkers,” they said.

In April, the Commerce Department launched a section 232 investigation under the Trade Expansion Act into the effect of certain steel imports on national security. 

A decision was expected by the end of June but the Trump administration has postponed a decision.

In the first six months of this year, steel imports increased 25 percent compared with the first six months in 2016, boosted by increases in rebar, cold-rolled steel, tubular goods and grain-oriented electrical steel 

"These import levels are unsustainable for U.S. companies and their workers," the senators wrote in the letter.

"Unfortunately, the steel sector expects them to continue to increase unless a conclusion of the Section 232 investigation is reached immediately," they wrote.