To Top

The Sweet Irony of “Made in America” Day

(Chuck Muth, President, Citizen Outreach) – On Monday, President Donald Trump announced “Made in America Day” at the White House to promote American-made products from all 50 states.

Surprisingly, the product from Nevada had nothing to do with gambling, booze, sex or shows.  It was…candy.  Candy manufactured by Nevada-based Kimmie Candy.

“We were looking for products made in the USA from every state, and Kimmie Candy is a well-known American-made candy company from Nevada,” explained White House media affairs director Helen Aguirre Ferre to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.  “They were being manufactured abroad and decided to come back home.  We hope that many companies return, stay and grow manufacturing within the USA.”

What’s ironic about this is that U.S.-based candy companies like Kimmie – large and small – have been, and continue to be, vocally critical of the U.S. sugar program which is the very embodiment of the “Made in America” Trump Doctrine when it comes to trade.

As the President himself explained in his remarks, he wants to “provide a level playing field for American workers and American industry,” noting that when we “grow more products in our country using American labor…the profits stay here, the revenue stays here, and the jobs – maybe most importantly of all – they stay right here in the USA.”

Yet candy companies for years have been clamoring to purchase artificially cheap sugar from foreign countries that subsidize their sugar industries and violate trade agreements rather than use Made in America sugar which continues to cost almost exactly the same as it did 30 long years ago.

“For decades, Washington has allowed other nations to wipe our millions of American jobs through unfair trade practices,” the President observed.  “No longer are we going to allow other countries to break the rules, steal our jobs and drain our wealth.”

“We have countries that charge us a 100% tax on our products,” Trump noted.  “But when that product is sold by them to us, we brilliantly charge them nothing.  And people say, ‘Oh, that’s free trade.’  No, that’s stupid trade.”

In reality, that is exactly the kind of “stupid” trade the U.S. sugar policy of limited and targeted tariffs and import quotas thwarts.  Indeed, the U.S. sugar policy might very well be considered, pardon the phrase, the “gold standard” of U.S. trade policy under President Trump.

“We’ve been looking the other way for a long, long time,” the President declared.  “We have to look at our nation first for a change.”

Which is exactly what the America-first sugar program does.  It’s exactly the kind of policy that puts American workers, American manufacturers and American farmers on a level playing.  It’s not a program that should be eliminated.  It should be emulated.  So let it be written; so let it be done.