In this Dec 5, 2017 photo, US President Donald Trump, left, speaks as Senator Jeff Flake, Republican of Arizona, looks during a lunch meeting with Republican members of the Senate in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, DC. Senator Flake on March 12, 2018 introduced a bill to nullify Trump's steel and aluminum tariffs. (SAUL LOEB / AFP)
WASHINGTON – US Senator Jeff Flake on Monday introduced a bill to nullify President Donald Trump's steel and aluminum tariffs, warning they would hurt the US economy if implemented.
We in Congress simply can't be complicit as this administration courts economic disaster in this fashion.
Jeff Flake, US Senator
"These tariffs will do just what tariffs have always done and lead to job losses and will stymie economic growth," Flake said on the Senate floor.
"We in Congress simply can't be complicit as this administration courts economic disaster in this fashion," he said.
"I urge my colleagues to join me in exercising our constitutional oversight to invalidate these irresponsible tariffs."
The Senator warned that "we risk reversing those gains that we have made" if the United States enters a trade war.
Trump announced last week that the United States would slap a 25-percent tariff on imported steel and a 10-percent tariff on imported aluminum, which would take effect in 15 days.
The move has sparked widespread criticism and opposition among congressional Republicans, business groups and trading partners.
However, Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn said Monday that there's little chance the Republican-controlled Congress will pass legislation to block Trump's tariffs on aluminum and steel. He expected lawmakers who support free trade to keep lobbying the administration to add more exemptions.