Republicans Have Cut Taxes on the Rich, Increased Them on the Middle Class

Image Source/Cultura/ZUMAPRESS

So how are those tariffs going, President Trump?

When President Trump placed tariffs on imported aluminum last spring in an effort to protect American producers, European rivals thought their U.S. profits would come under pressure. But months later European aluminum companies have yet to feel much pain.

….“German companies tell us that the tariffs don’t bother them right now,” said Christian Wellner, executive board member of Germany’s GDA association of aluminum companies….The reason, according to Alimex: Many of its U.S. rivals used the tariffs to raise prices, and non-U.S. companies have followed suit, sometimes more than offsetting the 10% duty set by the U.S. government.

It’s still early days, and anyway, Trump’s tariffs were aimed primarily at China.¹ Still, it sure looks as though the tariffs are simply being passed through to consumers, acting like a sales tax and raising the price of everything made with aluminum.

Bottom line: Republicans have cut taxes on the rich and increased them on the middle class. In both cases they’ve done their best to hide their actions, but based on poll readings it looks like they’ve finally failed. For the first time ever, the American public seems to have cottoned on to exactly what “tax cut” means in Republicanese.

¹And Canada. Maybe. It’s kind of hard to know with Trump.


Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2019 demands.

We Recommend


Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.


Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.


We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.