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Trump may be able to order US firms out of China — but it will cost him politically, says business leader

September 3, 2019, CNBC

Timothy Stratford spoke with CNBC about the possibility of President Trump ordering U.S. companies out of China. Mr. Stratford says, “The President could issue orders that would make it very difficult for American companies to continue to do business in China, but I think it’s not a legal question of whether he’s going to do that — it’s a political and economic question.”

 

The President cited the Emergency Economic Powers Act of 1977 in a tweet which allows the president to deal with “any unusual and extraordinary threat ... to the national security, foreign policy, or economy of the United States.” Mr. Stratford says “extreme step” for the president to exercise that right. He adds, I think that it would be a very radical step for him to take. I think there would be huge pushback across the board in the United States including from leaders of his own political party, and therefore it seems unlikely that he would go that far. The U.S.-China economic relationship is very, very complicated. It affects a lot of companies and a lot of industries. Just to say ‘okay, let’s be done with it’ is...a very simplistic way to approach it."

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