During an appearance on Huntsville, AL radio’s WVNN on Thursday, Sen. Doug Jones (D-AL) urged President Donald Trump to make finding a solution to trade disputes a priority regarding his administration’s economic policy.
Jones argued finality could have a calming effect on the American economy.
“The thing that the president needs to do first and foremost is to get these trade wars over,” Jones said. “That is going to settle the economy not only in this country but globally it will help settle the economy. That’s what needs to be done first and foremost. We’re in a position right now where there is so much uncertainty, number one, with our manufacturing sector. You saw today the statistics came out for the first time in a decade the manufacturing sector actually contracted. That is not a good sign. You’re seeing the inverted bond yields. You’re seeing all sorts of signs that are not pointing in the right direction.”
The Alabama Democratic U.S. Senator noted the impact trade was having on some sectors of the economy. He also mentioned the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) as a part of his plea to the White House.
“A payroll tax [cut], while it sounds good, is not going to be the Band-Aid to fix this and to stop this,” he continued. “It has to be much bigger. And this is not forces outside of our control. I mean, this is the president’s tariff and trade war that is by and large doing this. Ask the farmers that are hurting, the farmers that are going bankrupt. Ask the manufacturers and their uncertainty in the automobile dealers. So, if you want to talk about something that needs to be done, get down and get your trade representatives, sit them down and say, ‘I want this finished. I want this completed. Let’s get the new USMCA agreement with Canada and Mexico out there and on the table. Get that and get that done. That will settle things, and this economy at least a little more stabilized.”
“Right now, we have seen everybody that has thought this is a really booming economy – it has appeared to be very robust – but it has also appeared to be very, very fragile,” Jones added. “We’re seeing the cracks right now. We even saw today – I was listening to a jobs report where they had to revise the number of jobs that were created. That is not a good sign either, so they’re going back and looking and it’s not as good as people thought it was. So, all of this hurts the confidence, and unfortunately with a major tax cut that was given in 2017 – a good bit of which by the way I supported, corporate tax cuts and the tax cuts to low- and middle-class folks. But that tax cut and the Federal Reserve interest rate cut – there’s not a lot of tools in the toolbox except for the tariffs. That’s where the president ought to be focused.”
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