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As many of you have heard, the Trump administration is considering tariffs of up to 100 percent on European wines. This possibility was floated weeks ago but in recent days, as a comment period and schedule have been finalized, it's clear this is a serious concern ...
It's also an existential threat to the broader U.S. wine industry—the thousands of people who import, distribute and sell these wines, as well as the thousands more who do logistical work: shipping, warehousing, etc. ...
The proposal would have devastating impacts to food and wine merchants and distributors in every state. And that doesn't even include the many thousands more people employed in restaurants and hospitality who face potential work reductions or job losses. ...
In part that's because these cuts also will impact far more than wine: whisky, most cheeses, olive oil and hundreds more products. A full list can be found at the bottom of this page:

These tariffs are not only short-sighted and punitive, they're also targeting the wrong people: (1) the issues in dispute involve industries having nothing to do with food or beverage; and (2) as many have noted, tariffs affect not producers but importers, i.e., Americans. ...
So if you haven't yet spoken up yet about the existing 25 percent tariffs, or the proposed 100 percent tariffs, NOW IS THE TIME TO DO SO.

I can't stress this strongly enough. It's essential the U.S. Trade Representative see the deep impacts this will have across the country ...
And I should also be clear: There are not one but TWO proposed tariff actions at issue, which not everyone knows. I mention this because you should be sure to comment on BOTH issues ...
The first is retaliation for France's proposed Digital Services Tax (DST), which would force tech giants to pay taxes they thus far have avoided. These tariffs are specific to French goods.

You can comment directly via the form here:

The second involves retaliation over subsidies for Airbus, which was the source of the 25 percent tariffs issued in October. These tariffs apply broadly to goods from most EU nations.

You can comment directly via the form here:

In case you're curious, these were my own comments, posted yesterday (though not yet live on regulations.gov, perhaps because, as all my editors know, I write long):
Now, you DON'T have to comment at this length! If you browse the comments on regulations.gov re: either dispute, you'll get a sense of the typical length and tone. Even a brief comment will be valuable!
Also, PLEASE, if you work in the industry, make sure to leave your name, affiliation and location. It's important that the USTR see this is a trade war that will hurt real Americans—including many in states the Trump administration views as politically valuable. (Hey, Wisconsin!)
Point being: If ever you've worked in wine or restaurants, or just enjoyed a bottle of French wine or Italian olive oil (or Scotch whisky etc.) NOW IS THE TIME TO SPEAK UP.

This is a trade fight being waged unfairly, and we as Americans will be the ones punished.

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