April 9, 2018

After being confronted by his own words that called tariffs "prosperity killers," Larry Kudlow tried the who's on first routine with Fox News Sunday's Chris Wallace, with little results.

Kudlow defended Donald Trump's tariffs against China by saying he's against "blanket" tariffs. Has he ever mentioned that term before, ever? It was made up to try to obfuscate his belief that tariffs only hurt consumers.

[Transcript via FoxNews.com]

Wallace: Here is what you said just last month when President Trump announced his first round of tariffs. And this wasn't an announcement. This was real imposition of tariffs on aluminum and steel. Here you are.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KUDLOW: Tariff hikes are prosperity killers. They always have been and they always will be. Tariffs are taxes and the ones who suffer most are the users.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: So who should we believe, that Larry Kudlow or this one?

KUDLOW: I thought you might run that. I'm opposed to blanket tariffs and that's where it first started.

WALLACE: But that's what the president is talking about?

KUDLOW: No, he has changed his view, even on the national security action. We've got a lot of exceptions and a lot of carve-outs.

WALLACE: But you're not talking about carve-outs or exceptions for China.

KUDLOW: Well, hang on. So, I oppose the blanket tariffs, I always do.

He continued, "Now, with respect to China, I've always been a hard-liner on China, and while I don't like tariffs, sometimes there is no substitution for putting tariffs into the discussion, into the process. That is part of the quiver of arrows that the president has....\

The rest of his defense was about the protection of US technology, but it never addressed the idea of tariffs.

If Kudlow was still on CNBC, he'd be flipping out if any president tanked the stock market so badly by proposing tariffs so willy-nilly.

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