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Trump supporter eyes moving factory to Mexico over tariffs
A supporter of President Trump is considering moving his company's production headquarters to Mexico in an effort to avoid Trump's tariffs on Chinese imports, according to The New York Times.
Pat LeBlanc, the chairman of EBW Electronics, voted for Trump in 2016 but told the Times that the tariffs are "killing us."
"I just feel so betrayed. If we fail because the company is being harmed by the government, that just makes me sick," he added, saying that he expects that his profits in 2019 will be cut in half because of the tariffs.
Trump has engaged in a trade dispute with China, so far placing tariffs on $250 billion of Chinese goods and pledging tariffs on another $267 billion. Trump says the tariffs are a response to unfair trade practices by Beijing.
EBW Electronics has suffered from those tariffs because of higher costs for components such as transistors, resistors and capacitors, the Times reported.
The company is currently based on Michigan, where it has been throughout its existence, but EBW President Cory Steeby said Trump's tariffs incentivize companies to leave the U.S.
"It's a tax that comes right off the bottom line," Steeby said. "It totally incentivizes you to move out of the United States and build either in Canada or Mexico. These are active conversations right now."
EBW has filed for exemptions from the tariffs but has not yet received a response from the federal government, according to the Times.
Steeby added that there is "no intelligence to the way" tariffs are being implemented.
"The tariffs are designed to hurt China, but they are being paid by American companies," he said.