Tenn. Farmers Send Letter To Blackburn, Black, Asking For Tariff Opposition

Dozens of Tennessee farmers have urged the state’s U.S. House delegation to oppose Donald Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs, saying they worry the fallout will cripple the rural state’s agriculture.

In their open letter Monday, 42 farmers wrote that the tariffs would raise prices for farmers to update equipment, expand production or renovate farm buildings and storage.

They say anticipated retaliatory tariffs would make it harder to export Tennessee crops and hurt farmers’ ability to make ends meet.

The letter specifically calls for opposition to the tariffs from Republican U.S. Reps. Marsha Blackburn, a U.S. Senate candidate; and Diane Black, who is running for governor. The two have clung closest to the president in their respective races.

Blackburn has defended the tariffs, saying she understands where Trump “is trying to get” with the policy decision meant to punish “bad actors” and not hurt American consumers or workers.