Corker blasts Senate colleagues for blocking vote on tariffs

This article was edited to bring it up to date…. the original piece was published in the Chattanooga Times Free Press….

U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., yesterday took to the Senate floor to denounce Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and his Republican colleagues for not allowing a vote on his proposal to require congressional approval of proposed tariffs by the president.

Image result for cry baby cartoon imagesIn an speech on the Senate floor, Corker said “it is ridiculous” that amendments can’t be voted on in the U.S. Senate, including one he is pushing to limit presidential authority on trade barriers which he said most Senators seem to support.

“I haven’t heard a single senator on our side that hasn’t expressed concern to the president directly about what’s happening with tariffs,” said Corker. “Our farm folks are worried about NAFTA. Our auto manufacturers are worried about Canada and Mexico and what’s happening in Europe. Our steel and aluminum folks are concerned. I haven’t heard a person that hasn’t had some degree of concern. And all my amendment would do is say, ‘Look, Mr. President, you go negotiate, but when you finish, come back, and as senators and as House members, let us vote up or down.'”

The legislation was sponsored by the left leaning Corker and Sens. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.), moderate Pat Toomey (R-Pa.), Mark Warner (D-Va.), leftest Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Mike Lee (R-Utah) (his opinion we might listen to), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), Ben Sasse (R-Neb.), and Jerry Moran (R-Kan.).

Corker offered the amendment in response to Trump’s recent decision to impose a 25 percent tariff on steel and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports, even from U.S. allies, arguing they are needed for national security.

Brazil, Argentina and Australia agreed to limit steel exports to the U.S. to avoid tariffs.

Corker is offering his tariff proposal as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which the Senate is currently debating and could approve later this week.

Corker said the Senate is abdicating its oversight responsibilities by allowing Trump to impose tariffs under the guise of national security without any checks from Congress.

Now that was probably the only true statement to come out of Corker’s mouth in years.

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