Trump’s trade war is hitting the agricultural Midwest hard as farmers in eight of the top ten soybean producing states that voted for Trump are going to be looking at bankruptcy as they are already being hurt by Trump’s trade war with China.
Chuck Todd said on Meet The Press:
The escalating trade war President Trump has started between the United States and, well, everybody, hasn’t had a direct impact on the lives of most Americans yet. But the one place where people are starting to already feel the pain, the agricultural Midwest. Farmers who grow crops like wheat and corn or who produce pork. And guess what? They’re getting hit hard. And when the U.S. hit China with tariffs, China knew exactly where to hit back. For instance, soybeans.
China is the number-one soybean importer in the world. And they announced retaliatory tariffs on U.S. soybeans in April. Previously China got 40% of its soy from the United States. In 2017, 57% of all U.S. soybean exports went to China.
So what’s happened? Soybean prices have already fallen 15% since China announced the tariff, more than a two-year low. And in Iowa, for example, the Des Moines Register estimates the new tariffs could cost soybean farmers in the state $624 million. And the political consequences could be significant for the president’s party, especially going into the midterms this November.
These are the top ten soy producing states in the United States. Eight of them voted for Donald Trump in 2016. And guess what? He came really close in one more, Minnesota. And within those states, a whopping 95% of the soy-producing counties voted for Donald Trump. In other words, the repercussions of President Trump’s trade policies are hurting the very people who supported him the most.
The top soybean states all have either a governor’s race, Senate race, or both this year. Minnesota actually has two Senate seats up. These red or trending-red places could very well turn back into tossups or even go blue after November. Of course, there are lots of reasons folks in these states support Donald Trump. And maybe some of them like the tough talk and action on trade. But keep in mind, the trade wars started by the Trump administration has a lot of fronts. Steel, aluminum, cars, are all on the horizon, which means what we are seeing right now in the Midwest, may only be the beginning.
Trump supporters were already crying that they may go out of business due to his immigration policies, but the trade war could open up a new wave of economic woe for people who got swindled by tough talk and MAGA hats.
Trump supporters are getting what they deserve
If anyone voted for Donald Trump and didn’t expect this to happen, they are getting what they deserve. Trump was consistent about his views on immigration and trade. As a candidate, Trump openly ached for a trade war. Did these farmers think that the guy who complained that America was getting screwed on trade and called Mexicans rapists was not going to hurt them economically? Anyone who is surprised by this deserves the economic consequences.
When people say that your vote matters, this is what they mean.
Trump conned people who got played on their resentments and biases, and if you allowed yourself to get fooled by Trump, you’re getting what you deserve.
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Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association