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Paulsen Stands Up for Minnesota Job Creators & Free Trade, Questions Administration Trade Policy

Congressman Erik Paulsen (MN-03)made waves yesterday in a hearing of the House Ways and Means Committee with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer.

Paulsen voiced the concerns he’s heard from Minnesota job creators about the Administration’s tariff proposals and trade policies. Check it out below.


Lawmakers voiced concerns about potentially sparking a trade war with China.

"Let's not shoot ourselves in the foot," Rep. Erik Paulsen, R-Minnesota, told Lighthizer, saying such a move could jeopardize 800,000 manufacturing jobs in Minnesota.

Retailers including Minnesota-based Best Buy would be harmed by penalties imposed on imported products from China. "Consumer electronics doesn't have domestic production," said Paulsen, who questioned the benefit of "raising the cost of a laptop for a college student."

-- U.S. trade rep: "We are losing to China", CBS News, March 21, 2018

“I think we're on pins and needles,” Rep. Erik Philip Paulsen (R-Minn.) told U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer at a House Ways and Means Committee hearing on Trump’s trade agenda. “I hope we won’t be seeing tariffs imposed on products that a lot of American families and consumers and small business purchase every day.”

To drive home his concerns, Paulsen cited a study by the Trade Partnership, a Washington-based analytical firm, that estimates Trump’s steel and aluminum tariff will cost five jobs in downstream manufacturing and services sectors for every one job it creates in steel and aluminum.

If expected trade retaliation is added in, the ratio widens to 18 lost jobs to every one job created, affecting many blue-collar workers who voted for Trump, Paulsen said.

-- Trump’s trade policies slammed by GOP lawmakers, Politico, March 21, 2018


Congress is also weighing legislation that would boost the government's power to review foreign business deals, citing the threat posed by state-backed acquisition of US firms.

But some politicians and industries, including retailers, have expressed concern about possible retaliation.

"I'm all for targeting Chinese intellectual property violations, holding them accountable - but let's be targeted in what we want China to change," Erik Paulsen, a Republican who represents Minnesota, urged Mr. Lighthizer on Wednesday.

"Let's not shoot ourselves in the foot."

-- Trump set to announce China sanctions after IP probe, BBC, March 22, 2018


View Congressman Paulsen’s full exchange with Ambassador Lighthizer here:


Paulsen also had the chance to voice his concerns about the Administration’s trade policy earlier today in a hearing with Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross:



“I share the Administration’s goal of standing up for American workers,” Congressman Paulsen said following today’s hearing. “We’ve made a great deal of progress for American workers, and the last thing we want to do is hurt those workers by creating new barriers for them to work. I’m going to continue to ask tough questions and give voice to the concerns I hear from Minnesotans about the Administration’s trade policies.”