GOP senator: 'We need somebody out there who understands that we operate in a global economy'

GOP senator: 'We need somebody out there who understands that we operate in a global economy'

GOP Sen. Joni ErnstJoni Kay ErnstGOP senator divorcing from husband GOP senators introduce bill to preserve ObamaCare's pre-existing conditions protections Pence: Trump’s national security will be as 'dominant' in space as it is on Earth MORE (Iowa) criticized White House trade adviser Peter Navarro in the wake of the Trump administration's announced tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, saying early Thursday the White House needs someone who understands the U.S. role in the global economy. 

"We need somebody out there that understands that we operate in a global economy. And we want free and fair trade," Ernst said on "The Hugh Hewitt Show" in response to a question about Navarro. 

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"Just because you’re slapping tariffs on steel doesn’t mean that there aren’t going to be repercussions in other areas," she continued. 

"We export a lot of our soybeans to China, and we know that China is a bad actor. But there is a delicate balance out there, and we need to have thorough negotiations. We haven’t gone through that process."

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellKey GOP senators appear cool to Kavanaugh accuser's demand Trump hints at new executive action on immigration, wants filibuster-proof Senate majority The Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by United Against Nuclear Iran — The Hill interviews President Trump MORE (R-Ky.) said earlier this week that he has "genuine concern" that the president's announcement to impose a 25 percent tariff on imported steel and a 10 percent tariff on imported aluminum could lead to a trade war. Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanElection Countdown: Trump confident about midterms in Hill.TV interview | Kavanaugh controversy tests candidates | Sanders, Warren ponder if both can run | Super PACs spending big | Two states open general election voting Friday | Latest Senate polls On The Money: Midterms to shake up House finance panel | Chamber chief says US not in trade war | Mulvaney moving CFPB unit out of DC | Conservatives frustrated over big spending bills Nancy Pelosi: Will she remain the ‘Face of the Franchise’? MORE's (R-Wis.) office, meanwhile, issued a statement saying he was “extremely worried about the consequences of a trade war." 

The issue has also created a rift in the White House, and reportedly helped lead to economic adviser Gary Cohn's resignation. 

Navarro and Commerce Secretary Wilbur RossWilbur Louis RossThe booming economy trumps Trump's trade battle with China On The Money: Senate approves 4B spending bill | China imposes new tariffs on billion in US goods | Ross downplays new tariffs: 'Nobody's going to actually notice' Ross: 'Nobody's going to actually notice' new tariffs on China MORE have come out publicly to support the tariffs. 

The president suggested in an early morning tweet on Thursday that he will take action to enact the steel and aluminum tariffs.