This Friday, Trump's Director of the National Economic Council, Larry Kudlow, went on Fox Business Network and said this to host Stuart Varney while trying to quell fears about Trump starting a reckless trade war with China: Trade coalition of the willing to take on China: Larry Kudlow:
The tit-for-tat between the U.S. and China is part of a “process” and not a “trade war,” according to National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow, who said other nations are on board with America.
“Japan is walking with us,” he told FOX Business’ Stuart Varney on Friday. “Just give us another 24 to 48 hours—you’re going to see a trade coalition of the willing.”
Kudlow made a appearance on this weekend's Fox News Sunday, and host Chris Wallace asked Kudlow if he was ready to announce which countries were willing to join the United States, and Kudlow couldn't name a single country willing to get on board with tariffs against China.
WALLACE: OK. You said on Friday that you were going to announce a trade coalition of the willing today, other countries that were going to join us in taking on China. Who are they?
KUDLOW: Well, I don't (ph) -- I didn't make this announcement. I'm just observing.
WALLACE: No, no, you set on Friday, between 24 and 48 hours I'm going to announce the trade coalition of the willing. Do you have them?
KUDLOW: They are coming to us.
WALLACE: Who are they?
KUDLOW: Japan, Europe, Australia, Canada. They have come to us. The president actually --
WALLACE: They are not talking about tariffs.
KUDLOW: Sure they are.
WALLACE: No, they're not.
KUDLOW: Sure they are.
WALLACE: Japan said that they were going to join us in taking this issue to the world trade organization and to object to Chinese trade practices just as free traders have done for years.
KUDLOW: But if China maintains its third world status, as they have in the WTO, then other countries are free to take whatever actions they want.↓ Story continues below ↓
WALLACE: But -- if I just depress this, has any other country joined us in threatening tariffs if China doesn't clean up its act?
KUDLOW: I can't answer that. I don't even want to answer that.
All I'm saying is my trade coalition of the willing will put the whole world behind the United States' actions against China, and this is going to have a big effect on China. China does not want to lose face, but China does not want to be regarded as the enemy in trade for the entire world.
The WTO, by the way, is one of the processes. Ambassador Lighthizer has that in his releases. So, we'll work there. We'll work directly with the Chinese.
But I want to make this clear: President Trump is a great negotiator. The tariffs, which none of us particularly want, may -- I say may -- have to be part of this discussion and argument.
This guy had been taking bulls**ting lessons from his boss.
China seems to be taking these threats very seriously. We'll see how long it takes Trump to flip flop on this once he hears enough screaming from senators from states that are going to be the ones to take a financial hit from a trade war if Trump makes good on his threats.