Iron Range leaders support Trump's steel tariffs despite fears o - KBJR 6 Your Weather Authority: News, Weather & Sports

Iron Range leaders support Trump's steel tariffs despite fears of trade war

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A trade war is brewing Friday night as the President of the European Union says they will retaliate against planned U.S. tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum by taking aim at American exports.

This as more Iron Range leaders praise the Trump administration's proposal stating action needs to be taken to protect U.S. steel importantly, Iron Range mining jobs.

A national debate has sparked and Trump's own party fear it will cause a trade war.

But on the Iron Range where the economy depends on steel manufacturing, leaders are supportive.

President of the Iron Mining Association, Kelsey Johnson says,  "Indications are pretty good that this will be a real benefit to not only the steel industry but also the Iron that produces the steel." 

Those in favor of the tariffs say the crux of this issue is just having a level playing field for the first time and having a competitive price when it comes to buying, creating, and selling these metals.  

Johnson says, "Solidifying our domestic and steel production is one of the most important things that we can do as a nation to protect both our own investments and our own initiatives but also to ensure that we can do the infrastructure projects that we're hoping to do."

But across the border in Wisconsin. Governor Scott Walker shows disapproval for the proposal saying, "American companies that will feel the negative impact of the tariffs can move their operations to another country, such as Canada, and not face new tariffs on the sale of their products."

North of the border. Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau is concerned saying, "we are impressing upon the American administration the unacceptable nature of these proposals that are going to hurt them every bit as much as they hurt us."

But Some Iron Range officials saying they don't believe a trade war would be impactful to this specific industry.  

"The vast majority of the iron that's produced in Northeastern Minnesota is shipped to steel producers around the Great Lakes. So, I do not foresee it having a direct threat to the overall industry or to steel manufacturers," says Johnson.  

The tariffs will not be official until the President signs off on the final draft next week.

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