JM Rieger @RiegerReport Video Editor, The Washington Post • [email protected] Nov. 28, 2018 1 min read

My latest for @thefix:

President Trump last month directed advisers to craft a plan to reduce the federal deficit, even as he has relied in part on increased deficit spending to boost the economy. 

Over the past 8 years, Trump has floated no fewer than 14 proposals — ranging from inconsequential to illegal — to pay off the debt.

And as Trump has told aides to reduce deficits, he has floated proposals that would expand them. 

Trump also falsely believes reducing trade deficits will help reduce the federal deficit.

Trump last month on this:

“It’s literally first grade business, it’s so simple.” 

Trump has said his policies would help the stock market rise and trade deficits fall.

So far this year, the opposite has happened:

The trade deficit is at its highest level in a decade and the stock market has wiped out all gains for 2018. 

The Commerce Department said Wednesday that — despite more than two years of President Trump’s “America First” policies — the United States last year posted a $891.2 billion merchandise trade deficit, the largest in the nation’s 243-year history. 

The trade gap with China also hit a record $419 billion.

“Economists say the trade deficit is swelling because of broad economic forces, including [rising debt] that was exacerbated by last year’s $1.5 trillion corporate and personal income tax cut.” 

Trump on tariffs at CPAC last weekend:

“Billions of dollars, right now, are pouring into our Treasury.” 

The U.S. trade deficits with Mexico and China have *increased* by billions of dollars during Trump’s presidency. 

On May 10, Trump raised tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods from 10% to 25%.

On Wednesday, the Commerce Department said the trade deficit in goods and services increased by 8.4% in May to $55.52 billion. 

This week, Trump said the U.S. would impose a 10 percent tariff on an additional $300 billion of Chinese goods starting Sept. 1.

For the first six months of 2019, the U.S. trade deficit rose 8 percent from the same period in 2018 to $316.3 billion. 

You can follow @RiegerReport.


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