Free Trade

Biden Is Turning Trump's Trade War Into a Major Campaign Issue. More Democrats Should Follow His Lead.

A majority of Democratic voters now favor free trade. Some of the party's presidential candidates are starting to notice.

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Joe Biden made headlines this week for calling President Donald Trump "an existential threat to America." But in that same speech in Iowa, the Democratic frontrunner also made some comments on trade policy that were both less hyperbolic and more important.

"Trump doesn't get the basics," Biden said. "He thinks the tariffs are being paid by China. Any beginning econ student at Iowa or Iowa State could tell you the American people are paying his tariffs."

How many farmers in Iowa, Biden asked, are losing sleep at night because of the reciprocal tariffs imposed by China? How many manufacturing businesses are being choked by higher input costs? Trump "thinks he's being tough," the former vice president said. "Well, it's easy to be tough when someone else is feeling the pain."

Biden had already staked out a relatively pro-trade position within the large field of candidates seeking to replace Trump in 2020. But his remarks this week represent his most direct attack yet on Trump's trade policies. They are a welcome sign for anyone hoping the 2020 election will become a referendum on Trump-style economic nationalism, and it may signal to other Democrats that they should step up their criticism of the president's bellicose trade rhetoric.

As Biden ramps up his criticism of Trump's tariffs, some other candidates are similarly adjusting their message in a more pro-trade direction. Take Sen. Kamala Harris (D–Calif.). Less than a month ago, in an interview with CNN's Jake Tapper, the candidate criticized Trump's "irresponsible" preference "for conducting trade policy, economic policy, foreign policy by tweet," but she refused to condemn the president's use of tariffs. Now Harris is sounding a different note.

Trump's trade policies are "taxing American consumers," she told Noticias Telemundo in an interview last week. "When we look at the trade policy he is conducting in terms of China, now with Mexico, it's going to result in people here paying billions of dollars more a year for consumer products." In an NPR interview this week, Harris took an even stronger stance against what she called "the Trump trade tax."

"As a result of his trade policy by tweet, the American people on a monthly basis are spending $1.4 billion—with a 'b'—more on groceries, on clothing, on washing machines," she told the NPR Politics Podcast. "We've got farmers in Iowa who have soybeans rotting in bins. Farmers who over a decade bilt up relationships with a market in China and now, guess what? When you leave the game, people will find other players. So now we're looking at our farmers in Iowa trying to compete with people in Brazil, who are selling substandard products."

Other Democrats may have a harder time making that shift, particularly those on the party's left flank. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I–Vt.) has already published a trade platform that calls for more "Buy America" programs and, as Trump often does, criticizes America's trade deficit. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D–Mass.) has criticized Trump's steel and aluminum tariffs for not being protectionist enough, and she opposes Trump's NAFTA rewrite for the same reason. Both Vox and The New Republic have described her strategy as trying to "outflank" Trump on trade.

But those Democratic candidates who are shifting their stance on trade are following where their prospective supporters are leading. A 2015 Monmouth poll found that only 24 percent of Democrats believed free trade agreements were good for the United States. But when Monmouth asked the same question last month, the pollster found that support for trade deals has risen to 55 percent among Democrats. The Pew Research Center says that 72 percent of Democrats believe the North American Free Trade Agreement has been beneficial for the United States.

And as Democratic pollster Simon Rosenberg has pointed out, Trump's approval rating has been sinking in states where the trade war has been most damaging—electorally important states such as Iowa, Pennsylvania, and Michigan.

The New York Times' Neil Irwin outlines how Democrats can make an anti-tariff pitch to voters without appearing soft on China:

You can imagine a trade pitch from the 2020 Democratic nominee that goes something like this: "I'll work with allies to keep pressure on China over its unfair practices—but not with open-ended tariffs on thousands of goods that are a tax on American consumers and invite retaliation against American farmers. I won't use tariffs against countries that are our close partners. And I'll use trade policy to try to boost well-being for American workers, rather than using it as a cudgel on unrelated issues."

That seems to be exactly where Biden wants to go. In his Iowa speech on Tuesday night, Biden acknowledged that China is "a serious challenge to us, and in some areas a real threat." (That's a bit of a flip-flop. Last month Biden laughed off worries about China "eating our lunch" at an Iowa campaign event.) He said the United States should "build a united front of allies to challenge China's abusive behavior."

That was more-or-less the approach that the Obama administration was taking with the  Trans-Pacific Partnership, which was seen as a way to counter China's influence in Asia and across the Pacific. Trump's victory in the 2016 election ended the United State's participation in the trade deal—a decision that he may not have fully understood, and one that almost certainly made it more difficult for the U.S. to confront China.

Some of the shift in the Democratic electorate is likely a function of partisanship: Trump is bad; Trump loves tariffs; ergo, tariffs are bad. You shouldn't mistake that for a sudden embrace of free markets.

What's true for Democrats generally is also likely true for Biden specifically. Elsewhere in his speech on Tuesday, the former veep spoke glowingly about the auto industry bailouts approved during the Obama administration—"one of the proudest moments in the White House," he said. Elsewhere, Biden touted his support for high speed rail, "clean energy infrastructure," and higher taxes on the wealthy.

But to the extent that Biden is grasping toward a Clintonesque (the Bill variety) view on trade and an Obama-era desire to work with allies to solve problems like China's illiberal policies, he has the opportunity to offer a direct retort to Trump's utterly umoored approach.

And to the extent that he expresses that viewpoint while lapping the rest of the Democratic field, perhaps he can convince others to join him.

NEXT: "Photoshop the Change You Want to See in the World"

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  1. The deep misunderstanding of Trump’s trade policy by people who have never owned a business, or actually “worked” for a living, is threatening the American economy.

    1. Yes, Trump Deeply Loves Us All!!! And the morons can NOT understand that, the less we trade with that them thar “others”, the richer we will all be!!! (Next step, trade barriers between New York and New Jersey, to Protect Er Jerbs!!!)

    2. As opposed to all the other trade restrictions that Democrats put in place. Those have never hurt the US economy.

      Boehm thinks tariffs are not first paid by the importing company (In this case Chinese companies) who want to sell their products inside the USA.

      If Americans buy Chinese products and ship them back to the USA, there is no tariff.

      1. Boehm thinks tariffs are not first paid by the importing company 1) Bullshit
        2) You just explained why Trump’s tariffs are bat-shit crazy

        Admit it. You’re PISSED that Biden has a better trade policy than Trump!

        It’s the tax code, stupid.

        1. CORRECTED for clarity

          Boehm thinks tariffs are not first paid by the importing company

          1) Bullshit
          2) You just explained why Trump’s tariffs are bat-shit crazy

          Admit it. You’re PISSED that Biden has a better trade policy than Trump!

          It’s the tax code, stupid.

      2. Literally nothing you just said is correct.

      3. Check out Hihn is back. Man he has a lot of troll socks.

    3. Yes please let’s elect more simple minded progressives over someone who at least is getting it right 50% of the time..
      What the hell is wrong with Reason… Perhaps it is the Bill Weld quotient . Phony Egalitarianism and Libertarian Ideology. The thought of supporting a party who supports any progressive is staggering. I imagine most that the staff and their supporters are a combination of globalists, anti-Constitution statists who have never served.

      1. They’re an-caps who would rather let progressives burn it all down than side with sanity because progressives have better cocktail parties

  2. Even if Drumpf hadn’t been proven by Mueller to have colluded with a hostile foreign power, he’d still have zero chance of reelection. Presidents simply don’t get reelected when the economy is this terrible.

    #DrumpfRecession
    #KrugmanWasRight

    1. See? Now that’s funny. I knew you could do it.

  3. A majority of Democratic voters now favor free trade.

    Horseshit. They’re not “for” anything except more free stuff. They oppose Trump’s trade policy because it’s Trump’s. If he favored free trade they’d furiously denounce it.

    1. Green.
      New.
      Deal.

      “Free minds, free markets” my ass.
      Reason has such little respect for its audience that it apparently expects us to believe it possible to believe in both free trade and the GND.
      They are mutually exclusive.
      Anybody who claims to believe in both is mentally ill.

      1. And WHO told you that Reason supports the Green New Deal? The voices in your head? Citation please!

        1. SQRLSY, try to keep up.

          1. I can’t keep up with the voices in your head if you don’t share them!

            1. Also, for your own good, may I offer you the following advice:

              Taking therapy from your own head voices is NOT a good idea! Take therapy from your (well-meaning, benevolent) fellow human beings will give you a better, more balanced result!

              1. You’re a gnat no better than Hihn.
                You make yourself look like a fucking moron.
                Reason writes an article about how Ds now support free trade. I point out that one cannot support both the GND and free trade.
                Your dumbass pops up to ask where Reason said it supports the GND.
                You have neither the intellectual, emotional, or psychological ability to understand the simplest of things.

                1. Hahahahaha…triggered. Your comment about supporting the GND and free trade makes zero sense. Also, Reason has never supported the GND. You are everything you just accused the squirrel of and more.

                  1. Hahahahaha. Lame attempt at deflection by Mcgoo95.

                    What Nardz laid out makes perfect sense, you’d just rather pretend it didn’t.

                    Any party that has the GND as a centerpiece doesn’t support anything that eve approaches freer trade.

      2. “Free minds, free markets” my ass.
        Reason has such little respect for its audience that it apparently expects us to believe it possible to believe in both free trade and the GND.

        I’m calling you out on the Green New Deal.
        PROVE IT

        1. Biden’s ideas

          This Reason article implies Biden has better plans. Well, here’s his plans. You decide.

          1. Non-responsive diversion

          2. This Reason article implies Biden has better plans.

            NOT ON THE GREEN NEW DEAL

            Well, here’s his plans. You decide

            I’ve decided, based on your response, that you are EXTREME Authoritarian Right.

            Anything else ON TOPIC?

        2. How’s the crow taste?

          1. (boldface in response to aggression by Ryan … I’m yelling because Ryan cannot read even BOLDFACE)

            How’s the crow taste

            (lol)
            I challenged his BULLSHIT — which i quoted — about Reason editors and Green New Deal. I PUT IT IN BOLDFACE … AND YOU STILL SCREWED UP

            Reason has such little respect for its audience that it apparently expects us to believe it possible to believe in both free trade and the GND.

            I’m calling you out on the Green New Deal.
            PROVE IT

            You responded on BIDEN’S views (OMFG)
            BIDEN IS NOT A REASON EDITOR
            CAN … YOU …. HEAR … ME ….
            NOW?
            (all caps AND bold???)

    2. this, absolutely. They are for open immigration and free trade now because Trump is against it.

      Principals over principles, every time.

    3. Free trade? They support getting rid Trump, Conservatives, Libertarians and any one else who does not support a Progressive Statist mindset.. They will say anything to obtain and retain power and as result you can believe nothing they say . They have no integrity.

  4. >>>Joe Biden made headlines this week for calling President Donald Trump “an existential threat to America.”

    difficult to believe “headlines were made” for this. Biden can’t spell existential I’d be surprised he knows what it means.

    1. Well, Trump surely did coarsen the language in politics. I remember Trump reminding blacks that Democrats wanted to put them back in chains. Literally.

  5. Democrats don’t give a shit about free trade.

    If Trump came out against kicking puppies tomorrow, Democrats would start polling in favor of it shortly thereafter.

    Once you finally realize you’re starting to make an ass of yourself, just stop.

    1. Kick a puppy for Pelosi!

      1. +1

    2. Even better, they don’t mean free trade, they mean “free trade”, as in trade centrally managed by our technocrat betters. Actual free trade between free individual actors doesn’t require complex trade agreements.

      Incidentally, Trump needs to use that puppy idea or anything equally absurd to take his trolling to the next level.

      1. Its like Boehm who lies so much he actually thinks there were no trade restrictions before Jan 20, 2017.

        1. The Reason definition of free trade is the pre Trump status quo.

          1. The Reason definition of free trade is no tax on foreign goods, but payroll and income tax on domestic labor.

            Adam Smith on tariffs to offset domestic taxes on production:

            “It will generally be advantageous to lay some burden upon foreign industry for the encouragement of domestic industry, when some tax is imposed at home upon the produce of the latter. In this case, it seems reasonable that an equal tax should be imposed upon the like produce of the former. This would not give the monopoly of the borne market to domestic industry, nor turn towards a particular employment a greater share of the stock and labour of the country, than what would naturally go to it. It would only hinder any part of what would naturally go to it from being turned away by the tax into a less natural direction, and would leave the competition between foreign and domestic industry, after the tax, as nearly as possible upon the same footing as before it.”

            1. +100

            2. I’m going to bravely go out on a limb and state that no author here at Reason will even mention that critique. It is inconvenient so

              It. Will. Be. Ignored.

              Prove me wrong boys.

              1. Have they ever explained how they expect to make the US more libertarian by importing foreigners more in favor of big government than Americans are?

                I’ve been asking that one for years now.

        2. No, but there was a party that stood against trade restrictions before Jan 20, 2017. Also, there was a party that had a clue about immigration policy and its effect on border security and the quality of life for native-born Americans, as well as the newcomers. This is now dead space.

          1. No there wasnt. The calls for Chinese import restrictions and China gaming trade have been derided by the gop for a few decades now. Democrats have been more open to China restricting imports through monetary manipulation and regulations because they are largely paid off (Clinton’s, Biden, Feinstein). It didnt mean it was fair trade.

        3. Its like Boehm who lies so much he actually thinks there were no trade restrictions before Jan 20, 2017

          Prove it.
          You have been called out.

          1. Eric continues to deny unequal trade policies between us and China prior to the election.

          2. NolanLibertarian – sock = Hihn

        4. loveconstitution1789
          Boehm thinks tariffs are not first paid by the importing company

          Prove it.
          You have been called out … Twice on the identical lie

          And it’s TRUMP who believes that. A lie he repeats almost daily!!!

          1. Oh wait. Fuck off hihn.

        5. Poor Hihn and his revenge troll socks.

        6. funny how that works

    3. Well of course they don’t Ken. I don’t think the article suggests that.

      Some are seeing a political opening here in attacking tariffs as a tool in trade negotiations and policy. That is all.

      1. “A majority of Democratic voters now favor free trade. Some of the party’s presidential candidates are starting to notice.”

        A majority of Democrats wouldn’t give a shit about free trade if Donald Trump hadn’t hit Mexico and China with tariffs. If Hillary Clinton were doing the same, they’d be as anti-free trade as they’ve ever been. If there’s any issue here, it’s doing the opposite of what Trump wants. That’s all it is.

        1. Sure. This is not new in politics. Who is blue collar this year? Which ones are the military hawks? Don’t expect consistency.

    4. Ken Shultz
      June.13.2019 at 3:57 pm
      Democrats don’t give a shit about free trade.

      I agree with Shultz!
      Democrats are bat-shit crazy on this.
      Just like Trump!!

      Once you finally realize you’re starting to make an ass of yourself, just stop.

      Ummmmmmmmmm

      1. Hihn. Post your List of lunacy.

    5. I’m quite sure Ken has claimed Democrats don’t care about protecting those blue collar jobs. Whatever the equation the answer is always the same. It’s that 1984 math.

  6. The Koch’s are dangling campaign cash for politicians who promote their policies, including democrats. “Free” trade and open borders. Since they no longer represent the working class the dems of course the are open minded about it.

    1. Who besides the “Koch Boys” benefit from open borders, human trafficking and the drug trade ? The Cartels of course ..
      So it is very likely that if the Cartel are used to buying politicians in Mexico they are buying politicians in the USA . Beto’s family certainly have experience with drugs and money laundering . No doubt so does the rest of them.

      1. Which cartel? The “illegal” one with the gangs or the legal one with crony capitalism?

        And you’d be right AER, the answer is both.

  7. Poor Boehm.

    He thinks tariffs are not first paid by the importing company (In this case Chinese companies) who want to sell their products inside the USA.

    If Americans buy Chinese products and ship them back to the USA, there is no tariff.

    1. “If Americans buy Chinese products and ship them back to the USA, there is no tariff.”

      If I travel to China, and buy stuff, and ship it back to the USA, there’s no tariff? Can I do that, for me, and the 10 million other Americans who want to buy the same Chinese product? Or do I have to carry it all in my luggage, and bribe the customs and immigration folks? HOW MUCH paperwork and time-delay and bribes do I have to deal with? Details please!

      1. No dum-dum, that is called a customs duty.

        Customs Duty also come with a exemption based on factors for US Residents.

      2. Sqrlsy… there was kind of a famous case regarding someone creating a business by selling text books bought in asia… may want to educate yourself.

    2. hahaha. Ya sure ya betcha.

      1. Well if one of you is going over there and shipping stuff can you send me some of that chinese liquor I read about? Baijiu they call it. Always wanted to try it and can’t find it here.

        1. You can absolutely get baijiu here. But it is nasty, vile stuff.

    3. loveconstitution1789Boehm thinks tariffs are not first paid by the importing company

      Bullshit. Prove it.
      You have been called out … Twice on the identical lie

      Do NOT accuse Boehm of the raging ignorance shared by you and Trump. Nor your shameless dishonesty

    4. Hihn…hihn…everywhere hihn.

      It will be nice to see some more of Hihn troll socks banned and then he has to use some of his new startup troll socks.

  8. and he will lose with it in the case of China

  9. “I’ll work with allies to keep pressure on China over its unfair practices—but not with open-ended tariffs on thousands of goods that are a tax on American consumers

    meaning what precisely, idiot Eric B

  10. Wow, Trump has turned Democrats into free traders. Will wonders never cease?!

    1. And turned many Rs and Ls into protectionist socialists in the process. The man is a magician. It’s bizzarro world.

      1. Good article:
        “In spite of the President’s claim that tariffs are “the greatest,” and trade wars are “easy to win,” the economic backlash was easy to foresee. In fact, as the political success Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have brought “democratic socialism” into the mainstream of the Democratic Party, Trump’s economic nationalism threatens to pave a road to the same destination.”

        https://mises.org/power-market/trumps-road-socialism

        1. “After all, Trump’s tariffs are not only a new tax for Americans, but a policy of directly picking winners and losers in the economy. The interests of steel workers, for example, are being placed above the interest of consumers and farmers. This leads to the government using tax dollars to prop up farmers. Of course this spending means that tax-paying consumers are hit yet again, with their tax dollars being used for this new welfare program.”

      2. Is this where you pretend you dont know what socialism means?

        1. The truth hurts.

  11. It’s open territory, if someone wants to claim the free trade mantle in this upcoming election. Good for my buddy, Joe, if he wants to claim the 1 in 20 votes. Sad, but true. The fact that Trump thoroughly trounced all Republicans in 2016 should serve as a warning shot on where the party has been heading on trade and immigration, before he arrived. The Democrats, at least in part, seem obsessed with wealth redistribution. Anyone who self-identifies with libertarianism has to be depressed and maybe shriek “Go, Joe Biden!” What’s Plan B?

    1. the immigration and wealth distribution actually go together

      1. I can’t decipher your point. I see no connection between immigration policy and progressive taxation and benefits. Please explain.

        1. “the immigration and wealth distribution actually go together”

          When an immigrant comes here and mows my yard for me, I give him some money, and that is just HORRIBLE in the eyes of those who hate immigrants! Because I have distributed some of my wealth to an undeserving sub-human lawn-mower dude or dudette! That I got a freely negotiated-for benefit in a private transaction does NOT occur to the statists, who think that the entire USA (including my lawn and money) belong to the “collective hive”.

          THAT is how somehow-“evil” (freedom-loving actually) people violate the sanctity of borders and Government Almighty control of who may hire whom, and transfer their wealth, to whom.

          ALL MUST OBEY THE HIVE!!!

          1. I suppose I’ve committed far more serious ‘crimes’ in assisting immigrants, up to and including marrying one, once upon a time.

            However, there’s a broader point. Are you (anybody) in favor of free competition for a job and do you see the benefit of this being open? You seem to be, but I really don’t understand gld std’s point. I don’t think it has anything to do with using personal dollars to pay for services.

          2. “When an immigrant comes here and mows my yard for me, ”

            Libertopia needs more foreign servants.

          3. Interesting you didn’t mention whether the immigrant was here legally or a border jumper. I typically mow my own lawn and I have been doing it since I was a kid. Back then I mowed 4 lawns for money and my family’s for free. Never considered the work to be sub-human so that could be projection on your part. Progressives must project because they are a vacuous group with little critical thinking skills. We have borders in order to have a country supported by our Constitution … I lock my doors at night to keep those out who wish to do me and mine harm … I suggest you leave your doors open so that you can put into practice your “open borders” policies. Promoting Open borders while promoting a welfare state is committing suicide.

            1. “Promoting Open borders while promoting a welfare state is committing suicide.”

              Why not reform the welfare system then? Oh…..because you don’t really care about welfare as long as you can use it as an excuse to keep the brown people out…..or wage trade war…..or whatever other socialistic ends you seek to achieve. You drank the cool-aid, bro.

    2. . The fact that Trump thoroughly trounced all Republicans in 2016 should serve as a warning shot

      MANY errors.
      He got the nomination with only 37% of the vote — obviously BECAUSE there were so many others splitting the vote.

      Hillary got more votes, of 10 million who voted against him,

      He won the Electoral vote by the massive landslide of … 39,000 voters. To swing so tiny a number of voters … how much influence dd Russia, Wikileaks and Comey NEED?

      Polls show Trump losing to all the top six Democrat candidates.
      And he has again blatantly defied the rule of law (by refusing to fire KellyAnne, for breaking federal law, as recommended by the government watchdog.)

      Julian Castro, Obama’s HUD secretary was fired for the same reason by …… Obama… as reported by those damn lefties — Fox News.
      https://www.foxnews.com/politics/julian-castro-fox-news-town-hall-hatch-act-kellyanne-conway

      We now have an UNDENIABLE impeaching offense. So Trump will likely cave. Again.

      Anything else?

      1. A new Hihn sock puppet.

        1. Is EVERYONE who kicks your ass to the curb … with FACTS … a “sock puppet” Or are you just a another poor loser with LAME excuses.

          1. Youre not fooling anyone Hihn.

    3. I do love this naive libertarian narrative that free trade is solely dependent on us policy.

  12. Huh…maybe it’s all good. Trump’s good in part because he gets all the right people mad, they blow their stacks and lose popularity, which is good. But the backlash on trade and migration is good too, and fostering the backlash is why they’re so anti-Trump here at Reason.

    The drawback is that to get some improvements on trade — I’m not so dumb as to think they’d ever allow free trade, just freer — we get stuck with all the rest of what the Democrats want, which is far, far worse than what the Republicans want.

    1. How many dimensions are there to this chess game? And how much time on our clocks?

      1. Being pro-liberty is not the same as anti-Trump.

  13. Except few people care about trade and tariff specifics and certainty will not by the election. It is not a primary reason people vote for president.

    1. That’s what elected Trump. Both are thought to be the cause of all the lost jobs, by the uneducated. Thus, the Rust Belt whites.

      1. I would argue that Trump was not elected based solely on his trade agreements. It may have contributed to his success but much had to do with HRC being a horrific candidate. Most Americans don’t understand what is in most of our Trade Agreements that are negotiated by faceless career bureaucrats with little understanding of business. It is difficult because Americans have little control on the outcome yet bear all of the burden of the results. We do need to bring China to heel but I doubt it can be done. I fear the Republic is doomed.

        1. I would argue that Trump was not elected based solely on his trade agreements.

          Who are you arguing with????

  14. Democrats and Liberals here in Canada are ideological psychos.

  15. Even if Drumpf hadn’t been proven by Mueller to have colluded with a hostile foreign power, he’d still have zero chance of reelection. Presidents simply don’t get reelected when the economy is this terrible.

    1. OBL forgot to sign in with his regular account

  16. I’m pretty sure a trade war with China is one of the priorities for the old school Democrats in the Midwest. If Biden is the nominee (50/50 at best) then it will blow up in his face. Trump is going to call him “China Joe” and that will be that.

  17. “How many farmers in Iowa, Biden asked, are losing sleep at night because of the reciprocal tariffs imposed by China? How many manufacturing businesses are being choked by higher input costs? Trump “thinks he’s being tough,” the former vice president said. “Well, it’s easy to be tough when someone else is feeling the pain.””

    Wait a minute, are Democrats acknowledging that high taxes are a bad thing? That taxation is theft? The mere thought of this is too much irony or hypocrisy to even process. Imagine when voters see that the logic Biden is offering applies doubly to their own income taxes. When something becomes a “major campaign issue” even 95 IQ voters eventually come to understand points like this. It would be better if there were less income tax and more transactional and consumption-related taxes like tariffs.

    1. It would be better if there were less income tax and more transactional and consumption-related taxes like tariffs.

      Blatantly false. Among the WORST nonsense on the wacky right.

      The rich consume a small percentage of their income. The middle-class consumes nearly all its income (debt purchases). So a consumption tax is a LOT crazier than what you’ve read,.

      And the rich now subsidize roughly 40% of the entire tax burden of the core middle-class ($40-100k). So, what you’ve been told would nearly triple middle-class taxes.

      Dems are not the only ones that have been totally brainwashed by the political elites.

      1. You are missing one key point. Currently with our tax environment there is no incentive to save. Also, the more we make, the more taxes we pay. Change over to a consumption tax and your are taxed on what you spend. Suddenly there is incentive to not spend as much and save.

        Also, for the middle class, the tax money not being taken out of their checks goes into their accounts. Now there is more money. Many will spend it because they can’t help themselves but many would also actually start saving.

        1. Currently with our tax environment there is no incentive to save.

          So, we should shift the punishment to consumption?

          Also, the more we make, the more taxes we pay. Change over to a consumption tax and your are taxed on what you spend. Suddenly there is incentive to not spend as much and save.

          Good luck increasing middle-class Taxes 250-300%. Less consumption means laying off people, which more than offsets the saving (that would NEVER pass)

          Also, for the middle class, the tax money not being taken out of their checks goes into their accounts.

          Sucked away even worse with a consumption tax of 30%, on more of their dollars.

          Progressive tax rates subsidize roughly 40% of the entire middle class tax burden. “Flattening” those rates would be a 67% tax – increase to the middle class, if to a flat income tax. A consumption tax would be MUCH worse .

          The rich consume a small part of their income, and the middle class consumes almost all of theirs (including debt). So, the rich is taxed on a much smaller share of their income, AND at a lower rate.

          The ONLY way for the tax code to be neutral, on savings vs investment, is TWO flat taxes, on both income and consumption, and each with the same low tax rate.

      2. Fuck off, Hihn.

        1. Fuck off, Hihn.

          Off is my daughter’s name you sick degenerate

  18. “…A majority of Democratic voters now favor free trade…”

    Translation:
    ‘…A majority of D’s now favor anything other than what Trump is doing…’.
    BTW, I think a trade war is one where no one wins, but assigning the ability to understand that to a majority of D voters takes a strong infection of TDS.

    1. I think a trade war is one where no one wins,

      So glad you finally agree that Trump is a babbling imbecile, and a threat to our economy.

      but assigning the ability to understand that to a majority of D voters takes a strong infection of TDS.

      But ….
      Trump is just as stupid, accorduing to … you.
      You’ve clearly been infected by OBS, or perhaps LDS.

      Are you really not aware of who launched a trade war .. that even you admit cannot be won.

      1. Fuck off, Hihn.

  19. Yeah, but Dems are just as stupid on where all our good jobs went … because THEY caused it (1986 TRA)

    Trump says its imports and immigrants.

    Our own tribe has the dumbest excuse of all … AUTOMATION! … after 50 years of ridiculing the ancient Luddites who screeched that the Industrial Revolution (spinning wheel) meant FEWER jobs needed for what we own … instead of MORE jobs, making 96% of what we now own … because humans cannot OWN more until we first MANUFACTURE more.

    Who reminds Cato, Mercatus and Reason.com about Economics 101? Automation frees workers to make MORE stuff … and cheaper … from NEW jobs. But …… it’s the tax code, stupid.

    1) As those NEW jobs are created, they are created overseas.
    2) Our tax code PUNISHES jobs creation
    3) Tariffs do NOTHING for the taxes … and FURTHER increase consumer prices. LOSE LOSE
    4) Trump’s tax cuts ALSO miss the point — while giving him a MASSIVE 20% tax CUT (less than the 50% cut he campaigned for)

    –Our new investment has the longest tax write-offs … longer to get your own money back AND REINVEST WITH NO NEW DEBT OR STOCK required. (the repealed BOTH Kennedy’s and Reagan’s depreciation reforms.)

    – The ONLY country that taxes corporate profits TWICE (Fuck off, Bernie) …. everywhere else pays dividends tax-free, INCLUDING THE DEMOCRATIC SOCIALIST COUNTRIES, BERNIE.

    — The ONLY country that taxes inflationary capital gains (no indexing)

    – The ONLY country where health care is paid by EMPLOYERS.

    — The ONLY country that EXEMPTS all but the largest corporations form the corporate income tax!! (GOP did THAT dumbfuck move)

    Do the math: We double-tax large employers, who provide the best wages and benefits ,.. to SUBSIDIZE smaller corporations, who provide lesser wages and benefits. … With EXTRA punishment to manufaturers!

    The worst tax penalties are on large manufacturers … who provide the best-paid union jobs …. destroyed by libruls “closing loopholes” … while conservatives and libertarians remain cluelessly masturbating in a deep, ant-gummint cave..

    P.S. Trump campaigned on a 50% tax cut for HIMSELF … who’d be a billionaire with a maximum income tax of .,.. 20%.
    What’s YOUR tax bracket, Trumpsters/Suckers?

    Trump got “only” a 20% tax cut, ENTIRELY for the rich.

    We’re doomed. And in 2020, we’ll likely elect a President who’s either a socialist or a fascist.

    Let the screeching begin …

    1. Fuck off, Hihn.

  20. “Biden Is Turning Trump’s Trade War Into a Major Campaign Issue. More Democrats Should Follow His Lead.”

    Hope so. They can lose the Labor vote for a generation. I doubt the Neocon vote will be worth it.

    Let the Dems go full globalist and the Republicans go full nationalist, and see who wins.

    1. (smirk) It’s already over.
      You lost.

      1. “(smirk) It’s already over.
        You lost.”

        No, Hihn. You and that hag lost.
        Fuck off.

    2. Yup. Then Libertarians can step in to be the Party of freedoms and fiscal responsibility vs whichever party won.

  21. “Some of the shift in the Democratic electorate is likely a function of partisanship: Trump is bad; Trump loves tariffs; ergo, tariffs are bad. You shouldn’t mistake that for a sudden embrace of free markets.” This paragraph is garbage. What’s your point? Where’s the support? I’m not saying you’re wrong or right; I’m saying this statement should have been left out.

  22. Reason staff really need to hold a symposium on when to vote with Democrats as opposed to voting for Democrats. With: whenever they advance Libertarian principles. For: under no circumstances should you ever enable a political party with a rising Marxist wing.

    1. They’re more afraid of Jordan Peterson teaching white men to be responsible than they are about marxism

  23. Well, I guess Dems are also not too concerned with the former Soviet Union. I mean, Trump Jr met with a lawyer and then left quickly and outrage. Biden threatens US funds if Ukraine doesn’t do business with his son and he’s the bright, shining star.

    Sure.

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  25. […] similar volte-face on free trade? So far, Biden has staked out ground to the contrary, campaigning directly against President Donald Trump’s tariff-happy approach to economic policy. This comes at a […]

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