Farmers are frustrated. Automobile workers are edgy. Consumers are bracing for cost increases.
And the nation poised this year to eclipse the United States as the world’s biggest consumer market is refusing to budge as the Trump administration tries to get China to play fair on trade.
This was not the sort of wartime leader most presidents expect to be. But Donald Trump, praised by his acolytes (and himself) as a master negotiator and derided by his critics as more bully than bully pulpit orator, has gotten the country in a good old-fashioned trade war. And it’s one that may produce no economic or political winner.
Lawmakers in both parties have been irritated for some time over what they see as unfair trade practices by China, where there is more state control over the economy.