Trump threatens EU with ‘tremendous retribution’ via auto tariffs

President Donald Trump stood by his threats to levy sweeping tariffs on automobile imports as a way to extract concessions from trading partners, despite opposition from the industry and discontent in Congress with the White House’s proposal.

Resistance to the tariffs is strong and growing. A coalition of foreign and domestic auto companies, along with auto dealers and auto-parts makers, released a letter on Wednesday urging Trump to refrain from the tariffs.

A bipartisan group of 149 House members also urged the president not to move forward with the tariffs. Auto unions were among the few industry players offering qualified support for the tariffs.

Still, at a cabinet meeting on Wednesday, Trump threatened “tremendous retribution” against the European Union, specifically mentioning auto tariffs, if his meeting with EU officials next week doesn’t yield what he considers a fair auto trade deal.

An expanded version of this report appears on

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