Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor
Washington, DC, United States (4E) – Republicans in the Senate again stood-up to Donald Trump the other day, joining the Democrats in overwhelmingly approving a non-binding resolution for Trump to get congressional approval before using national security as a reason for imposing tariffs on other nations.
Trump used this excuse to impose steel and aluminum levies against Mexico, Canada and the European Union.
The bipartisan 88-to-11 vote on the resolution sent a powerful message to Trump about how frustrated senators are over Trump’s uncalled for tariffs that threaten the economy of the U.S. and its staunchest allies.
The measure would require congressional approval of tariffs issued under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, which requires national security concerns to be the driving reason for imposing the tariffs.
“Let’s be clear, this is a rebuke of the President’s abuse of trade authority,” said Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) and a frequent and vocal critic of Trump and his policies. “Can you imagine being Canada and being told your steel and aluminum exports to the United States (are) a national security threat?”
On Tuesday, the Senate voted 97-2 in favor of a pro-NATO resolution, just as Trump arrived at Brussels where he immediately criticized NATO on Twitter for a variety of unhinged reasons, including that many nations don’t spend 2% of their GDP on defense. He repeated this false accusation in front of gathered NATO leaders and insanely said Germany was controlled by Russia.
The tariffs measure was written by Sen. Bob Corker (R-N) who chairs the Foreign Relations Committee, and Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA), a free-trade advocate from a steel producing state being hit by Trump’s tariffs. They said this vote will help build momentum for tougher future legislation.
“This is a vote for Congress to assume its rightful role,” said Corker. “It’s a baby step.”
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