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U. S. Steel: Imports threaten our nation’s security
President Donald Trump says "we're not backing down" on his push to impose tariffs on imported steel and aluminum despite criticism from fellow Republicans. (March 1) AP
This is why President Trump has committed to begin to level the playing field: Opposing view
Those opposing President Trump’s decision to take strong action on steel imports dangerously ignore the Commerce Department’s detailed findings that steel imports threaten our national and economic security.
National security is only as strong as American steel: It depends on the domestic industry’s ability to manufacture steel from start to finish. A weaker or non-existent American steel industry leaves our nation dependent on countries focused on their economic interests and well-being, not ours. That leaves our country vulnerable, which is not a position the United States should ever be willing to accept.
America has the capacity to melt and pour the steel it needs for national defense; to build its infrastructure; to produce and transport energy and electricity; and to supply manufacturers of automobiles, machinery, appliances and other consumer and industrial goods, from tin cans to bulldozers.
OUR VIEW:Don't 'do stupid' on tariffs
For decades, foreign steel producers have targeted our open market with a flood of imports. While our domestic capability has remained stagnant since 2001, global excess steel capacity amounts to more than 700 million metric tons — more than six times the U.S. steel market. Unfair and illegal practices have left the U.S. steel industry too close to the brink. Tens of thousands of jobs have been lost, and thousands more are at risk.
This is why President Trump has committed to begin to level the playing field on steel imports: for the security and manufacturing strength of the United States.
While no one can predict tomorrow’s threats, the geopolitical climate will remain complex and uncertain. When we let foreign producers seize the lead in manufacturing for the sake of short-term wins, we risk surrendering America’s long-term future. President Trump’s strong action on steel imports recognizes that America cannot afford to outsource an industry as vital to security as steel.
David B. Burritt is the president and CEO of U. S. Steel.
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