Trump's promise to farmers that China was about to purchase tons of product has not materialized.
In a humiliating Thursday morning statement, Trump was forced to admit that he was wrong when he promised farmers that China would soon buy large quantities of American agricultural products.
Trump was reduced to groveling, essentially begging China to start buying products from U.S. farmers.
"China is letting us down in that they have not been buying the agricultural products from our great Farmers that they said they would," Trump wrote on Twitter. "Hopefully they will start soon!"
About two weeks ago, Trump triumphantly declared that China would absolutely be buying U.S. products soon.
"China has agreed that, during the negotiation, they will begin purchasing large amounts of agricultural product from our great Farmers," Trump announced in late June.
According to CNN, China says it made no firm commitments to purchase more agricultural products, contrary to Trump's premature boasts.
Even without these commitments, Trump agreed to put off additional tariffs on Chinese products and even eased restrictions against a Chinese telecom agency.
The episode represents Trump's latest stumble in an increasingly damaging trade war with China. Farmers across the country are facing skyrocketing levels of bankruptcy as access to Chinese markets is all but cut off due to Trump's trade war.
Even though farmers are struggling, Republican members of Congress continue to stand by him, even those in farm-heavy states. Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) claimed Trump "is doing the right thing" with his trade war even as farmers across her state struggle.
And farmers aren't the only ones being hurt by Trump. Consumers across the nation are paying more for household items like washing machines, and an escalating trade war could make smaller items like shoes and toys much more expensive.
Trump sold himself to voters as a master of negotiations. But rather than coming through for farmers in a time of need, the best Trump can offer is a weak "hope" that China might start buying from American farmers "soon."
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.