GOP senator on tariff threat: Hopefully Trump is blowing off steam because ‘this is nuts’

 GOP senator on tariff threat: Hopefully Trump is blowing off steam because ‘this is nuts’
© Greg Nash

Sen. Ben SasseBenjamin (Ben) Eric SasseOn The Money: Senate panel advances Trump's new NAFTA despite GOP gripes | Trade deficit falls to three-year low | Senate confirms Trump pick for small business chief Senate panel advances Trump's new NAFTA despite GOP gripes Congress to clash over Trump's war powers MORE (R-Neb.) slammed President TrumpDonald John TrumpNational Archives says it altered Trump signs, other messages in Women's March photo Dems plan marathon prep for Senate trial, wary of Trump trying to 'game' the process Democratic lawmaker dismisses GOP lawsuit threat: 'Take your letter and shove it' MORE's announcement Thursday that he was considering imposing $100 billion in tariffs on China amid the ongoing trade dispute between Washington and Beijing, calling it "nuts" and "dumb." 

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“Hopefully the President is just blowing off steam again but, if he's even half-serious, this is nuts. China is guilty of many things, but the President has no actual plan to win right now," Sasse said in a statement. 

"He’s threatening to light American agriculture on fire. Let’s absolutely take on Chinese bad behavior, but with a plan that punishes them instead of us. This is the dumbest possible way to do this," he continued. 

Sasse tweeted the statement, breaking his three-month silence on Twitter. 

 

 

Trump ordered the U.S. trade representative (USTR) to consider slapping $100 billion in additional tariffs on China on Thursday. 

Sasse joins Senate Republicans including Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleySenate begins preparations for Trump trial Big Pharma looks to stem losses after trade deal defeat Appeals court skeptical of Trump rule on TV drug ads MORE (Iowa) and Pat RobertsCharles (Pat) Patrick RobertsSenate GOP hopes to move new NAFTA deal before impeachment trial The Hill's Morning Report - Worries about war in world capitals, Congress Pompeo tells McConnell he's not running for Senate MORE (Kansas) in ripping the president's trade conflict with China this week. 

The Trump administration finds itself in a trade dispute with Beijing after the White House on Tuesday detailed a $50 billion tariff package on China, with 25 percent tariffs being leveled on imports of Chinese electronics, shoes, furniture and other goods.

Beijing retaliated on Wednesday, slapping 25 percent tariffs on imports of U.S. soybeans, corn, airplanes and automobiles in a package that totals about $50 billion worth of goods.

Trump said on Twitter on Wednesday that the U.S. was not in a trade war with China.