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The administration of President Joe Biden has sided with former President Donald Trump’s administration on steel tariffs and the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed.
The Court declined to hear an appeal brought by USP Holdings, which was rejected by lower courts, in which it claimed the Trump administration acted improperly when it enacted the tariffs. The Biden administration has left the tariffs intact for the most part and argued against USP Holdings and other steel importers who said they were damaged by the tariffs.
“The Biden administration understands that simply lifting steel tariffs without any solution in place, particularly beyond the dialogue, could well mean layoffs and plant closures in Pennsylvania and in Ohio and other states where obviously the impact would be felt not only economically but politically,” Scott Paul, president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, said.
“When a country (USA) is losing many billions of dollars on trade with virtually every country it does business with, trade wars are good and easy to win,” the former president said on Twitter the day after he enacted the tariffs.
“For example, when we are down $100 billion with a certain country and they get cute, don’t trade anymore—we win big. It’s easy!” he said.
The report added:
Trump cited Section 232 of the Trade Act of 1962, which permits the president to impose restrictions on the importation of goods deemed essential to national security. He said at the time that the tariffs were needed to bolster the production of airplanes, ships, and military materials with U.S. steel. The tariffs created tension with some U.S. allies, although some countries were exempted from the policy.
The Supreme Court turned away the petition in USP Holdings Inc. v. United States, court file 22-565, in an unsigned order. The court didn’t explain its decision. No justices dissented from the order.
In April 2017, then-Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross commenced an investigation to determine whether “steel was being imported under such circumstances as to threaten or impair national security,” according to the petition (pdf) filed with the Supreme Court.
Ross found in a 2018 report that “domestic steel production is important for national security applications” and that steel imports were on track to account for more than 30 percent of domestic consumption. He also determined that “excessive quantities of imports have the effect of weakening the internal economy of the United States, threatening to impair the national security.”
Last week, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously for a deaf student who sued his public school system for not providing an adequate education. The case could spark major change nationwide as other disabled students have alleged they were failed by school officials.
“The case the justices ruled in involves Miguel Luna Perez, who attended public school in Sturgis, Michigan. Perez’s lawyers told the court that for 12 years the school system neglected the boy and lied to his parents about the progress he was making, permanently stunting his ability to communicate,” PBS reported. “The justices ruled that after Perez and his family settled a complaint against the school system — with officials agreeing to pay for additional schooling and sign language instruction — they could pursue money damages under a different federal law.”
Perez, who emigrated to the United States from Mexico at age 9, argued that the school system failed him by assigning him an aide who was not trained to work with deaf students, did not know sign language, and left him alone for hours at a time in his later years in school.
The school was reportedly inflating his grades and leading his parents to believe that he would earn his high school diploma on time.
Just before graduation, however, his family was told he qualified only for a “certificate of completion.”
After the family filed a lawsuit, the school district settled on one of the claims and agreed to pay for extra schooling and sign language instruction for Perez and his family, among other things, and he graduated from the Michigan School for the deaf in 2020.
After the settlement, the family went to federal court to seek monetary damages.
The federal court ruled against the family, but the Supreme Court sided with the Perez family.
Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote in an eight-page opinion for the court that the case “holds consequences not just for Mr. Perez but for a great many children with disabilities and their parents.”
Perez’s lawyer Roman Martinez said in an emailed statement: “We are thrilled with today’s decision. The Court’s ruling vindicates the rights of students with disabilities to obtain full relief when they suffer discrimination. Miguel and his family look forward to pursuing their legal claims under the Americans with Disabilities Act.”