Dr. Roth seems to be praising Donald Trump as if he was a conservative. And yet Donald Trump’s signature policy has been his unconstitutional tax increases. Let’s talk about that and not side issues.
Article 1 of the Constitution states “The Congress shall have the Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises.”
There is no provision of the constitution giving Congress the authority to delegate this power to the President. And yes, tariffs (Duties) are clearly included in the taxation clause. So the “Trade Promotion Act” which Donald Trump has acted under is unconstitutional. A conservative might question how taxing something is a way of promoting it.
Even if Donald Trump could get congressional approval for his tax increases, they would be bad policy. Tariffs raise relatively little revenue compared to the harm they cause.
Donald Trump has spent more than the revenue collected on a program to compensate farmers for disasters (the disaster being Chinese retaliation for his own unconstitutional tax increase).
Although tariffs may raise employment on one industry, they hurt employment in other industries. For example, his tariffs on steel have hurt the automobile industry.
Imports are part of the American standard of living, raising their prices just leaves us with less stuff. It also hurts employment by leaving American consumers with less money to spend on other goods and services.
The money we spend on imports is used by foreigners to buy American exports or invest in American assets. Of course, some people will be worse off, but as conservatives used to say, it is not the job of government to pick winners or losers.
So please explain Dr. Roth, why you support Donald Trump’s unconstitutional tax increases?
Will you claim that Democrats have done it too? Yes, they have and think about what Elizabeth Warren might do following Donald Trump’s precedent.
Will you claim that we need this to protect American workers? That only makes sense if you view the job of steelworker as more important than an autoworker.
Will you claim we need to stop Chinese theft of American intellectual property? Taxing Americans seems to be an odd way of doing that.
Will you claim that tariffs aren’t really taxes as Donald Trump has claimed? The constitution and the dictionary disagree.
As a conservative, you should be attacking Donald Trump, the most socialist president the United States has had since Richard Nixon (remember wage-price controls). Why aren’t you?