Mexico targets Trump strongholds with retaliatory tariffs – Reuters

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As reported by Reuters, Mexico’s round of retaliatory tariffs against the US in response to President Trump’s hefty steel and aluminum tariffs are meant to deliver a clear message by targeting exports from Republican voting centers.

Key quotes

“Mexico’s retaliatory list, published in the government’s official gazette, included a 20 percent tariff on U.S. pork legs and shoulders, apples and potatoes and 20 to 25 percent duties on types of cheeses and bourbon.

A net importer of U.S. steel, Mexico is also putting 25 percent duties on a range of American steel products.

Mexico’s trade negotiators designed the list, in part, to include products exported by top Republican leaders’ states, including Indiana, where Vice President Mike Pence was formerly governor, according to a trade source familiar with the matter. Bourbon-producing Kentucky is the home state of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican.

Iowa, where one incumbent Republican representative, Rod Blum, is seen as vulnerable, is an example of a place where Trump’s party could be hurt. The state is the top pork-producing state in the United States and Mexico is its main export market by volume.

“We need trade and one of the things we’re concerned about is long-term implications that these trade issues will have on our partnerships with Mexico and Canada and other markets,” said Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig, a Republican.”

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