Too often in politics, words can be used to confuse, manipulate, and mask the truth. Politicians try to get creative with phrasing and language choice, hoping and praying that Americans go along with these games. If you know me, you I‹now I am always willing to call a spade a spade, which is why I am not afraid to raise the red flag on a recently-introduced bill that will have a terrible impact on consumers, ag & business.
The Foreign Pollution Fee Act is the latest iteration of a proposal to impose carbon “tariffs” that would raise the price of everyday goods for consumers and businesses while laying the groundwork for a new domestic carbon tax regime. Its reemergence has sponsors like Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) fighting alongside liberal climate activists and against working American families. The Wall Street Journal says the bill “could well have been written by the Sierra Club and AFL-CIO.” Former President Donald Trump objected to a similar tax scheme when in office, calling it “a bad deal” for Americans.
The misguided idea behind the legislation is to punish countries with higher Co2 emissions than the U.S. In reality, it would punish American workers and consumers, drive jobs overseas, and prolong the inflation crisis. As a businessman and champion for agriculture, I refuse to be fooled by fancy lingo and carefully-chosen titles.
A tariff is a tax, plain and simple. But businesses that pay it ultimately pass it on to their customers. In this case, taxes on a variety of goods our economy depends on — which would include cement, oil, plastics, and paper — could all increase. As the Journal notes, the Foreign Pollution Fee “will be absorbed by American businesses, workers and consumers, as all tariffs are.”
“U.S. production of most goods on the tariff lÎSt doesn’t come close to meeting domestic demand,” the Journal argues. “That means importing businesses won’t have an alternative to paying the tariffs, which would be filtered through supply chains and passed to consumers.”
This is basic economics. And common sense. President Trump was right, imposing border adjustment taxes on working families is a bad deal.
Americans are already straining under the regulatory onslaught and inflationary policies of the Biden administration. The last thing we need is more woke environmental policies set by an unelected bureaucracy that would eliminate working class jobs and hurt families.
During his tenure in the United States Senate, J.D. Vance has shown the unique ability to tune out the swampy Beltway noise and stand for Ohio’s working men and women. I hope he will take a firm position against this job-killing proposal.