In this Monday, March 4, 2019, photo, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks to the Future Farmers of America and Johnston High School students in Johnston, Iowa. President Donald Trump’s willingness to engage in international trade fights has set off volleys of retaliatory tariffs that are driving down the price of pork, corn and soybeans in Iowa and elsewhere. Pompeo sought to calm some of those nerves Monday even as he warned that Chinese theft of technology affects agriculture, too. “The good news is this _ help is on the way,” Pompeo said. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

Farmer patience on tariffs comes with caution flag for Trump

March 07, 2019 - 1:43 pm

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump's willingness to engage in international trade fights has him walking a political tightrope: Going to bat for steel and aluminum makers has endeared him to many voters in Ohio and Pennsylvania, where steel production is a matter of economic pride. But it could end up hurting him in agriculture-heavy areas that backed him in 2016.

Trump's tariffs are driving down the price of pork, corn and soybeans, contributing to a 12 percent drop in net farm income nationally last year.

The administration dispatched Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Iowa this week to assure farmers that help is on the way.

But Democrats in Iowa warn that people are growing increasingly frustrated with the tariffs.

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