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President Donald Trump speaks to reporters as he leaves the White House. President Donald Trump speaks to reporters as he leaves the White House in Washington for a trip to New York City, Nov. 2, 2019 (AP photo by Manuel Balce Ceneta).

How Trump Is Manipulating U.S. Trade Policy to Suit His Own Political Interests

Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2019

For just the third time in modern American history, the U.S. House of Representatives is investigating whether a president should be removed from office. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has so far kept the impeachment inquiry narrowly focused on President Donald Trump’s pressure campaign to get Ukraine to dig up dirt on his political opponents. But even as the House approved a resolution last week setting out the next steps in that inquiry, there have been reports of other instances in which Trump appears to be manipulating U.S. policy—in this case involving trade—to serve his narrow political interests, rather than those of the country as a whole.

One of those instances was related to the Ukraine scandal. The others involved allegations of improper influence over the administration’s process for granting exemptions from steel and aluminum tariffs, and concerns about the plans for implementing the automobile rules of origin under the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, the renegotiated North American Free Trade Agreement known as the USMCA. ...

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