Trump's trade war is bankrupting farmers at a record rate


Farmers are paying the price for Trump's reckless standoff with China and Mexico, despite Trump saying trade wars are 'good and easy to win.'

Trump's reckless trade war continues to roll on, and farmers are bearing the brunt of the pain, filing for bankruptcy at an accelerated clip.

According to bankruptcy filings analyzed by the Wall Street Journal, bankruptcy rates from farmers have skyrocketed to the highest level in a decade, thanks to Trump's disastrous trade policies.

In the Eight Circuit Court of Appeals — which encompasses Midwestern states such as Arkansas, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska and both Dakotas — farm bankruptcies soared by 96% between 2008 and 2018, according to the WSJ analysis.

In the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals — which includes the Midwestern states of Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin — bankruptcy rates doubled between 2008 and 2018, the WSJ reported.

According to the WSJ's reporting, Trump's trade standoff with the likes of China and Mexico — major consumers of American farm products — have sparked those countries to slap duties on U.S. exports such as cheese, hurting dairy farmers.

And other retaliatory tariffs on U.S. pork exports have helped drive down the cost of other meats like beef and chicken, the WSJ reported.

Trump pandered to farmers during the 2016 election, saying his policies would benefit them the most. At the time, many farmers bought his lies, with 70 percent of those voters choosing him over Hillary Clinton, according to an August 2018 Farm Journal Research survey.

Now Farmers have been sounding the alarm about Trump's trade war for months, with some calling Trump's trade war "devastating" back in June.

Even Republican senators who have stuck by Trump have admitted how bad the trade war is for their own constituents, with Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) calling the Trump's trade policies "catastrophic" for American farmers back in July.

Despite the pain farmers are feeling, Trump is showing no signs of letting up on his trade demands. And there are signs that could hurt him in his 2020 quest for re-election.

According to the Farm Journal Research poll, just over half or 56 percent, of farmers who voted for Trump in 2016 said they'd pull the lever for him again.

Maybe it won't actually take Trump shooting someone in the middle of Fifth Avenue for his supporters to abandon him.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.