Trump Asserts He Can Force U.S. Companies to Leave China – The New York Times

“Our great American companies are hereby ordered to immediately start looking for an alternative to China, including bringing our companies HOME and making your products in the USA,” Mr. Trump tweeted, adding, “We don’t need China and, frankly, would be far better off without them.”

Mr. Trump’s threat to invoke the 1977 act to force companies to leave China would be his most recent unorthodox use of standby authorities that Congress delegated to the presidency for exigent circumstances. The president previously threatened to use those emergency powers to impose tariffs on Mexican goods, unless the Mexican government did more to stop migrants from illegally entering the United States.

The president’s tweet could further unsettle American companies that conduct an enormous amount of business with China, one of the United States’ largest trading partners. Stock markets fell sharply on Friday after Mr. Trump first raised the prospect of cutting off trade altogether.

His effort to use the emergency powers could also be challenged in court, given the restrictions surrounding when it can be invoked. The International Emergency Economic Powers Act says that if the president decides that circumstances abroad have created “any unusual and extraordinary threat” to “the national security, foreign policy, or economy of the United States,” the president can declare a “national emergency.” This triggers special authority for the leader to regulate “any transactions in foreign exchange” by Americans.


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