Rep. Steffen: Legislators call for congressional action on tariff policy

Contact: Representative David Steffen, 608.266.5840
Representative Peter Barca, 608.266.5504

International Affairs and Commerce Committee to Hold Hearing on State Response to Federal Trade Changes

MADISON – Today the International Affairs and Commerce Committee announced they will lead a bipartisan effort by Wisconsin legislators calling on Congress to take action to address recent federal trade and international tariff developments that have had a negative impact on Wisconsin farmers, companies and their employees.

“It’s critical that Congress show its support for the hard-working people of Wisconsin,” said International Affairs and Commerce Chair David Steffen (R-Howard). “Many key industries in our state, including our farming, dairy, manufacturing and paper industries are in jeopardy as these tariff disputes and uncertainties regarding the future of NAFTA continue.”

In addition to the letter, Chair David Steffen and Vice Chair Peter Barca (D-Kenosha) also announced that they are planning to hold an upcoming committee meeting on the state’s response to potential tariff increases on the drivers of our state economy.

“As someone who has been a leader on ‘Buy American’ efforts, I believe there is indeed need for changes on trade that support United States businesses and workers. But this must be done in a thoughtful and strategic manner,” Vice Chair Barca noted. “We must engage in soft diplomacy without starting a trade war or causing adverse outcomes for the economy and people of our state. I look forward to the committee’s hearing on current state plans and approaches related to this, as well as partnering wherever possible with federal officials for successful outcomes for Wisconsin.”

Steffen and Barca released a memo developed by the Legislative Council staff to the committee today as well which analyzes recent developments. The memo provides a summary of recent actions and impacted industries, as well as some options for state responses and guidance for legislators as they assist businesses and workers in their districts. The memo and the text of letter circulated by the committee today for signatures by legislators are attached.

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