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GOP lawmaker: Trump deserves more praise as farmer bankruptcies and suicides go up

Trump’s trade policies have decimated farmers and contributed to rising suicide rates. But Rep. Jason Smith is mad Democrats aren’t praising Trump’s policies more.

By Emily Singer - March 10, 2020
Rep. Jason Smith (R-MO)

Rep. Jason Smith (R-MO) on Tuesday drew attention to a speech he made criticizing Democrats for not praising Donald Trump’s policies affecting farmers — even as those policies have caused economic hardship in farming communities and contributed to rising suicide rates among farmers.

Smith posted a video of his remarks at a recent House Ways and Means Committee hearing on U.S.-China trade relations to his Facebook page, writing: “China has exploited our farmers and workers again and again and again. Decades have gone by with no change. And now, when President Trump decides to fight back? Just bickering and politics from Democrats. Disgraceful.”[0]=68.ARC6tiqp1jh6dG5HfA9LNqcqYicDbx-nsTGfqCec_bgr9_5jfXRXWu35N73P1gtSRmwYf9UNlzhVzqGkE482z4PMbKedW4iCdEHYmCYhQ0c-uJVh2ApzApS8mzOki4O7SWl_8I4O01tMCtY3cSO5p8KTzxnIPhP_jmtTFFsc8yqZC3t8KPgpbSFYGP64W_acPgTgLcI8o364RrartJ4V4aS5dH8it2bTP78nlGsKR28CSgYLBgQnFqGRTtbQXRu8dEo8Y2_lkq035F3ZVAwC0PRHD80ttoNgbh0Iq36_P86_MndUFaH29OyJressLZIMsPF9hjUWhkmgTRKFFMv__gplc21CNML7xJl_Yg&__tn__=-R

In the video, Smith says:

“We’ve had enough people try to act like like they care about farmers but do zero about it.


That’s what we’ve seen with members of Congress. That’s what we’ve seen with former presidents.


They knew China was [sic] bad actors. They knew that China was taking advantage of our farmers, our small businesses, our intellectual property. But yet they did nothing.


And then when someone did try to do something, such as President Trump, they then complain about it because it’s not enough!


Let’s try to help deliver for the American farmers, the American manufacturers, the American businesses, the American consumers.


But instead all we’re hearing is more politics, and more bickering, and more fighting, and like, ‘We’re not as good as so and so.’ I’m sick of it.

Smith is referencing Trump’s trade policies, where he slapped high tariffs on imports from China in an effort to lower the trade deficit between the United States and country.

However, China didn’t do what Trump wanted. Chinese leadership instead responded by putting its own retaliatory tariffs designed to hurt specific industries in the United States — specifically the farming and agricultural industry that Trump has said he loves.

Since then, the bankruptcy rate among farmers has skyrocketed and suicide rates among farmers has gone up.

Smith also complained about how Democrats aren’t praising Trump’s trade policies more for helping American businesses and consumers.

However, American business and consumers are the ones paying for Trump’s trade policies, with manufacturers forced to pay the higher tariffs, which are then shifted onto consumers.

Still, Smith refuses to criticize the failures of Trump’s trade policy.

“Let’s fight for the American people,” Smith said. “That’s what we need to do!”

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.

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