U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski, R, Ind., Thursday (March 22) challenged Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in a hearing on tariffs that confirm what local manufacturers have told her: steel and aluminum prices have already increased ahead of the tariffs set to take effect today. (To view a video click here or scroll to the right side of the RVBUSINESS.com.)
“This is about jobs in my district,” said Congresswoman Walorski to Secretary Ross, who testified before the Ways and Means Committee. “… What they and other manufacturers in my district have been telling me over the last year is that while tariffs take effect tomorrow, the mere threat of tariffs has been felt already.”
Walorski, however, expressed approval for the Trump administration’s decisions on Thursday to consider providing retroactive relief for businesses that successfully petition for product exclusions from steel and aluminum tariffs and to exempt the European Union (E.U.), Australia, Argentina, Brazil, and South Korea.
“Manufacturers and small businesses in northern Indiana and across the country have made clear that across-the-board tariffs would reverse our economic momentum and destroy jobs,” she said. “I’m pleased the administration is listening to these voices and further narrowing tariffs to better target bad actors while protecting American businesses, workers, and consumers.
“I’m especially encouraged the administration is moving toward providing retroactive tariff relief to businesses granted product exclusions, a commonsense policy I led my colleagues in calling for and one I hope will be implemented swiftly. I look forward to continuing to work to ensure a robust and fair process so Hoosier manufacturers have access the products they need.”
Walorski previously sent a letter to President Trump expressing concerns with his tariff proposal and sharing feedback from local manufacturers. She also signed a letter, along with 106 of her House Republican colleagues, urging the president to target unfair trade practices rather than impose blanket tariffs.