Kudlow Says No Tariffs Today. Maybe.

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

Most of the economic world expected Trump would impose $200 billion in additional tariffs on imports from China today now that the public comment period is over, but Trump's top economic adviser Larry Kudlow says he won't.


The U.S. Trade Representative’s office collected 5,914 individual comments on the proposed tariffs before a public comment period ended late on Thursday night.

“The president himself, we will evaluate the comments and we will make a decision regarding the $200 billion,” Kudlow said on Bloomberg Television. “We’ll make a decision on the volume, on the rate, on the timing, I don’t want to get ahead of that curve, it’s out there.”

Kudlow declined to say whether any decisions would be made on Friday.

The idea that Trump himself is going to read the comments is laughable. I could see him reading 3 or 4 of them before he quits.

In any case, I won't be convinced that Kudlow is correct until the clock strikes midnight tonight. It's possible he "declined to say" if any decisions would be made today because he doesn't actually know.

  • muselet

    I’m not sure Larry Kudlow knows what the word “evaluate” means.

    Assuming those 5914 comments consist of more than an unambiguous emoji—a thumbs-up or thumbs-down, say—it’s going to take a not-inconsiderable amount of time even to skim-read them. Yet Kudlow was coy about whether a decision regarding another round of tariffs would be made 24 hours after the comment period ended.

    All of this is particularly silly Kabuki theater, anyway. Trump is going to impose more tariffs on Chinese imports no matter what anyone says.


  • Draxiar

    Ever see that cartoon of a suggestion box piped directly to a rubbish barrel? That’s effectively what happens to those public comments most likely.

  • gescove

    Helluva way to run a country. Jeebus.

    • Victor the Crab

      Drumpf’s acolytes wouldn’t have it any other way.