The price for the product or goods its is made up of goes up and that means the consumer pays more for it.
When a Tarrif Makes Sense
- Protecting a domestic industry from foreign competition. If people have to pay more for a foreign product they are more likely to buy local products. In this case the government is telling and trying to force consumers what they should buy.
- Protecting a vulnerable domestic product while it retools or rebuilds. This is like the above but the argument is for a short term tax to help give an industry time to adapt to a changing market,
- Sanctioning or punishing a country by hurting its industries and thus citizens. This can make sense if, and only if your the majority customer and they cant just sell to other countries.
When a Tariff Does Not Make Sense
- Imposing a Tariff on a country without international support. If the country your trying to punish can easily sell elsewhere your not hurting it and instead your hurting your own citizens by making them do without or pay more.
- Imposing Tariffs on countries that you sell stuff to. This gives them the opportunity to impose counter tariffs and now your hurting your own consumers AND your own industries as they lose sales and likely lay off workers.
The issue is really not that complicated. Tariffs are usually a bad idea, though there are some circumstances where it could be a winning political strategy. However it is almost never a winning economic strategy.
Tariffs raise prices and cost jobs, especially if you get carried away with them.
We do need to improve Americans economic power and also do something to stop IP theft by countries such as China. Tariffs just are not the way to do that.
In fact right now, were actually helping Chna and by taxing our allies encouraging the rest of the world to make trade deals without us. The current GOP policy has already cost Americans and its going to get worse when and if most Tariffs actually go into effect.
The majority of Republicans are fully aware of this and many admit its a bad idea but since they chose to back Trumps play and not stop it they are #GOPComplict in Americans losing jobs and paying more.