In yet another another tweet tirade the President elect Donald Trump tweeted that he is planning to impose a 35% tax levy on American firms that move jobs abroad. He is trying to champion the rights of blue collar workers who have had decades of jobs being moved to countries that are cheaper to operate in. Mr Trump appears to be launching the idea of punitive taxes as a handicap to moving business abroad. He had previously floated the prospect of punitive taxes on imports from certain countries to try and close ever enlarging trade deficits mostly with Asian countries, most notably China.
Mr Trump is well known as a staunch protectionist when it comes to trade, and is desperate to stop jobs disappearing from the economy. Whilst many will not have a problem with him not wanting to lose jobs but there would be major questions over whether or not the taxes are likely to help, as there’s no doubt that any price increase would be passed on to consumers which would only serve to increase inflation. It’s well known that Trump believes that countries such as China abuse their position with regards to trade.
But he will have a long and potentially very expensive fight on his hands, most republicans would want the state to stay out of companies internal business decisions and would favour an open market. Support for Trumps position would be thin on the ground. It would also require a significant change to the law.
Also many experts believe that the Trump administration would have a large amount of legal challenges with regards to these rather controversial ideas. If indeed Trump tried to impose his will in this way it may cause start ups to move elsewhere, where business terms were a little more open.
The news media will carry on watching twitter with interest, as Trump has seemingly created a way of avoiding press conferences by using the social media platform to his advantage. Though during his campaign his more controversial tweets were seen as more of a hindrance to him than a benefit. Many will wonder why his advisors don’t try to limit his use of the platform, certainly to discuss his more controversial ideas.
How this policy idea will play out remains unknown, it appears that it may be more of a pipe dream than something that can be done in reality.
Joseph is a 34 year old freelance writer from London. He has a wide interest in politics and specialises in the subject. He's also a blog writer in his spare time.