Sen. Toomey critical of tariffs in meeting with business leaders

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) - Leslie Bradshaw works for Bway corporation, a tin can manufacturer with a facility in York. He says the business is already seeing the effects of recent steel tariffs.

"The cost of our tin plate has skyrocketed significantly, so we're going to have to pass that cost on to our customers," Bradshaw said.

The cost of their Bway's steel is up about 25 percent, and they're being forced to consider shipping some jobs overseas.

"We're not doing that and don't want to do that, but it's an option we have to look at," Bradshaw said.

Bradshaw's story was a familiar one to business leaders meeting Tuesday in Harrisburg. They shared the impact they're feeling from the tariffs with Republican U.S.  Sen Pat Toomey.

"I'm concerned about the path that we're on with these tariffs," Toomey told the business leaders.

The Trump administration earlier this year slapped tariffs on imported steel and aluminum, using national security as its reason.

"It is not a national security threat when we buy the modest amounts of steel and aluminum that we buy from Canada and Mexico and the European Union," Toomey said.

Toomey and other senators from both sides of the aisle have introduced legislation that requires Congress to approve any tariffs made in the interest of national security.

"It's long past time for Congress to take that responsibility back," Toomey said.

President Donald Trump last month announced $12 billion in emergency relief to farmers affected by the tariffs. Toomey criticized the move, saying it compounds bad policy with more bad policy. 

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