Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26), a member of the House of Representatives Ways and Means Subcommittee on Trade and Co-Chair of the Northern Border Task Force, is sounding the alarm on the real and harmful impact of the Trump tariffs.
Last week the President announced new tariffs on steel and aluminum – called Section 232 actions – on our strongest allies, including Canada and Europe. Companies in Higgins’ district are already hurting from these bizarre penalties on America’s greatest trading and business partners.
In a letter to Congressman Higgins, Lackawanna, New York based company Welded Tube, USA, writes, “The imposition of 25 percent duties on the OCTG we make in Lackawanna and finish in Ontario will render our products uneconomical. If the rules are not changed and our product is subject to full duties on its entire value, we will regrettably need to idle production in Lackawanna at the end of this week. We will be forced to lay off approximately 150 people, causing substantial harm to our surrounding community and New York’s economy.”
Higgins took to the House Floor, speaking out against the White House policy, which could cost Western New York jobs:
(To access video click above or go to: https://youtu.be/nwq22_i5KTY)
“Mr. Speaker: This administration’s reckless use of tariffs are inflicting harm on all of our communities including mine in Western New York.
“The harm is real and immediate.
“Welded Tube, a Canadian company with a factory in Lackawanna, New York, in my district, reports the cost of moving goods between the United States and Southern Ontario has increased from zero dollars last week to $214,000 this week.
“The company is reporting it may be forced to close without tariff relief.
“From small firms like Niagara Transformer to auto manufacturers like Ford and GM, the harm is real and widespread.
“The United States and Canada are the world’s largest trading partners. Canada has been a reliable ally in fighting terror and has been a good friend to the United States.
“We need to stand with our allies and friends, not abandon them.
“China’s trade actions threaten our national security, Canada does not.
Congressman Higgins’ Western New York district borders Southern Ontario. In 2017 goods and services traded between the U.S. and Canada totaled over $673 billion.