Manufacture This

The blog of the Alliance for American Manufacturing

There's truth behind it, even if the president gets the details wrong.

Originally published in the Washington Examiner.

No one would mistake President Trump for a details guy. And his constant obfuscations make it easy to dismiss the sentiment that underpins his rhetoric, particularly when he’s live-tweeting commentary on his growing trade dispute with China.

When Trump misstates the bilateral trade deficit, for instance, that’s a number easily referenced — and he can be easily proven wrong. It doesn’t exactly inspire confidence that he has a grasp of the issues.

Yet buried in his hyperbolic avalanches is the reality that a trade reset with China is necessary and overdue. And this is causing serious fissures in the Republican party.

Case in point: The developing feud between the president and the libertarian Koch network. In 2018, they’re the party’s money men, and every bit the free-trade ideologues of whom Trump is a skeptic. His protectionist inclinations have the Kochs even threatening to bankroll trade-friendly Democrats in future elections.

It’s their money to spend, of course. But if they think voters are going to follow them on this, they’re misreading the electorate and the mandate Trump brought with him to the White House.

How do they think he won the election, anyway?

Read the whole opinion here.