Top Republican Ryan leads GOP backlash against Trump tariffs

GUEST VIEW: Appreciation for Trumpism and tariff policy

White House Changes Course on Trade Policy

Flake said the new tariffs, which function as taxes on imports, of 25% on steel and 10% on aluminum would be detrimental to the United States economy and must be stopped.

Host Chuck Todd then asked Flake whether a Republican should challenge Trump, assuming he seeks the presidential nomination again.

The top Republican in the US Congress, Paul Ryan, publicly denounced President Donald Trump's imposition Thursday of steep tariffs on imports of steel and aluminium.

"Yes, I do ― I do", Flake said.

"I generally support the president on just about everything, but I think he's been misled, there are some people down there who have been misleading him on some of these things", Hatch continued. Senate Republicans were by-and-large unified in their opposition to the new 25 percent tariff on steel imports and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports that Trump announced last Thursday. "But that's not to say it will stay that way".

But on Friday, he will be in Manchester, N.H., to deliver remarks on "Country Over Party" at a "Politics and Eggs" event.

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Sen Roy Blunt, a Missouri Republican, who also opposes the tariffs, said he wasn't ready yet to embrace a legislative response.

"Our economy and our national security are strengthened by fostering free trade with our allies and promoting the rule of law", he said. Freedom Partners' executive vice president weighed in: "In no way will tariffs lead to a more competitive economy, nor will they add thousands of American jobs".

Flake also reiterated his belief that Trump's behavior as president, such as continuing to verbally abuse the media, "does real damage long term to the political culture" and should not be normalized.

"Of course this will have to go through the usual litigation process, either the WTO or the courts to see how this works", Cornyn said at an energy conference in Houston.

Despite widespread condemnation from House Republicans, none have introduced measures to counter Trump's action. "And I don't blame my colleagues for just saying, 'Hey, you know, I'm just not going to comment anymore.' But I think it's our responsibility, at least at some point, when he goes so far, to stand up and say, 'This is not normal".

Dan Nowicki is national political reporter for The Arizona Republic, part of the USA TODAY NETWORK.

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