When Donald Trump announced his tariffs plan in April he promised that it would only work to benefit farmers. “We’ll make it up to them,” he said. “The farmers will be better off than they ever were. It will take a little while to get there, but it could be very quick, actually.”
Fast forward to July 2018 and farmers are struggling. The agricultural industry has been hit so hard that the White House is preparing a $12 billion bailout for farmers, according to The Washington Post.
The $12 billion in funding will arrive through direct assistance, a food purchase and distribution program, and a trade promotion program, all paid for by U.S. taxpayers.
Trump and co. are reaching far back for assistance, relying partly on the Commodity Credit Corporation, a Depression-era program that started offering help to farmers in 1933.
The Washington Post notes that the program was created so long ago that it doesn’t require congressional approval while taking out a loan of up to $30 billion.
The White House will have no choice but to attempt a spin of the facts with the program. President Trump on July 24 tweeted that “Tariffs are the greatest!” before launching into a rant about fairness in world trade.
Tariffs are the greatest! Either a country which has treated the United States unfairly on Trade negotiates a fair deal, or it gets hit with Tariffs. It’s as simple as that – and everybody’s talking! Remember, we are the “piggy bank” that’s being robbed. All will be Great!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 24, 2018
Farmers have been hit especially hard after our trade partners issued retaliatory tariffs on billions of dollars worth of goods following Trump’s 25% and 10% tariffs on steel and aluminum, respectively. Retaliatory tariffs against the United States have included additional export costs for soybeans, pork, and beef, among other goods and services.