The president suggested earlier Thursday he would provide temporary exemptions for Canada and Mexico as he aims to revise the North American Free Trade Agreement. "Our economy and our national security are strengthened by fostering free trade with our allies and promoting the rule of law".
The White House said Wednesday that Mexico, Canada and other countries may be spared from tariffs under national security "carve-outs".
Trump moreover found little support among Democrats, even though that party is historically more protectionist.
The Trade Partnership, a consulting firm, said the tariffs would increase USA employment in the steel and aluminum sector by about 33,000 jobs but would cost 179,000 jobs in the rest of the economy.
Flake is now drafting legislation that would nullify the tariffs, worrying they will disrupt the economy.
Several lawyers were skeptical that a court would block the president.
Economic analysts warn that a trade dispute sparked by the tariffs could damage communities that backed the president in 2016.
Even if there is an initial victory from a friendly court to stay Trump's tariffs, a case would face hard appeals, according to Mark Warner, a Toronto-based trade lawyer with MAAW Law who practices in the US and Canada.
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"We have to protect & build our Steel and Aluminum Industries while at the same time showing great flexibility and cooperation toward those that are real friends and treat us fairly on both trade and the military". A WTO decision wouldn't halt USA tariffs, but rather authorize retaliation from trading partners.
Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, a Republican, said he plans to introduce legislation next week to nullify the tariffs though he has acknowledged that finding the votes to stop the president's actions could be hard.
Sen. Mike Lee, a Republican from Utah, is proposing legislation that would generally require future tariffs to get congressional approval. Even if Congress does act, it would likely need 67 votes to override an expected presidential veto in the Senate, a massive undertaking in a deeply divided body.
"Congress can not be complicit as the administration courts economic disaster", the Arizona senator said. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, said.
Sarah Sanders further referred that lawmakers should not be in a state of shock after the President's move, as "If they were caught off guard, they simply haven't been listening to what he's been saying and what he's been talking about and how he's promised to make good trade deals", she said.
In a Friday letter to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, Johnson outlined concerns about the impact on his home state.
Trump tweeted Thursday: "Looking forward to 3:30 P.M. meeting today at the White House". Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan's spokeswoman, Ashlee Strong, said on Monday in a statement, "We are extremely anxious about the consequences of a trade war and are urging the White House to not advance with this plan".
Gesturing to the workers, Trump said part of the reason he's in the White House was "because of you and my message having to do with you".