We know the process of gathering public comments and feedback on Trump's tariffs is nothing more than a formality.
We know that because previous comment periods have not led to substantial changes to any of his tariffs, but to clearly demonstrate that fact, Bloomberg reports that Trump is planning to impose his next round of $200 billion in tariffs almost immediately after the current comment period ends next week.
President Donald Trump wants to move ahead with a plan to impose tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese imports as soon as a public-comment period concludes next week, according to six people familiar with the matter.
Companies and members of the public have until Sept. 6 to submit comments on the proposed duties, which cover everything from selfie sticks to semiconductors. The president plans to impose the tariffs once that deadline passes, according to the people familiar with the matter, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the discussions aren’t public. [...]
The latest China tariff decision is causing heated debate within the administration, with Lighthizer and White House trade adviser Peter Navarro pushing for quick action, and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow arguing for more time, according to people familiar with the matter.
The sources who spoke to Bloomberg say it's possible Trump will stagger the tariffs and impose them in installments, but the total will reach $200 billion in any case.
After Trump announces that he's imposing $200 billion in tariffs, China is expected to impose $60 billion in retaliatory tariffs. Combined with their previous retaliatory tariffs, that will represent nearly everything China buys from the United States.
Beyond this point, China will response in other ways, such as increasing the magnitude of their tariffs or shunning American products altogether as they've already done with soybeans and sorghum.
Needless to say, Trump's $12 billion bailout for farmers isn't going to mean shit in the face of this. We're moving way beyond farmers to a point where whole industries could be threatened. Small businesses that depend on trade will be the first casualties.
Our trade deficit will continue to widen even if Trump goes through with this because Americans still need and want things that are only made in China.