Trump Tells US Businesses to Disengage with China

Alex Wong/Getty Images

Alex Wong/Getty Images


We ran the numbers: There are 2408 news articles covering this topic. 20% (485) are left leaning, 51% (1238) center, 28% (685) right leaning.

On Friday, President Trump sent a series of tweets ordering US businesses to look for alternatives to doing business with China. This move comes in the midst of a trade war with China, in which the Trump administration is implementing significant tariffs against the rival country. The president of the US does not have the authority to order business to pull out of China, despite Trump’s claim that he is entitled to do so under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act of 1977. However, the law does allow him to prevent future transfers of funds to China if he declares a national emergency. Trump’s declaration came after China announced on Friday that it is implementing new reciprocal tariffs on $75 billion of US goods.

A left-leaning article from the Washington Post characterizes Trump’s tweets as “extraordinary” and “angry.” They also investigated how the proclamation has affected various companies, from Apple and Foxconn to a local baggage company in California. In general, business owners are unsure of how seriously to take Trump’s statements. The article also notes that although some countries have been withdrawing their manufacturing jobs from China due to increased tariffs, but those jobs are not returning to the United States. Instead, they have been relocated to countries with even lower manufacturing costs, like Bangladesh.

A centrist article from The Hill interviewed an international trade policy expert from the American Enterprise Institute, who confirmed that Trump does not have the authority to withdraw American businesses from China. The article also notes that US stocks dropped significantly on Friday after Trump’s announcement. Centrist coverage in general tends to remark on the increasingly volatile relationship between China and the Trump administration.

A right-leaning article from the Daily Caller frames Trump’s comments as a retaliation against China’s tariff announcement. The article focuses more on China’s tariffs against the US than on the US’s tariffs against China. The article also quotes Trump’s tweets: “Sadly, past Administrations have allowed China to get so far ahead of Fair and Balanced Trade that it has become a great burden to the American Taxpayer.” Right-leaning articles in general tend to emphasize China’s side of the ongoing trade war.