Companies who outsource their operations to another country will face “retribution,” president-elect Donald Trump warned in a series of tweets on Sunday morning, and should be “forewarned” before making “a very expensive mistake.”
“The U.S. is going to substantialy reduce taxes and regulations on businesses, but any business that leaves our country for another country, fires its employees, builds a new factory or plant in the other country, and then thinks it will sell its product back into the U.S, without retribution or consequence, is WRONG!” Trump said.
“There will be a tax on our soon to be strong border of 35% for these companies wanting to sell their product, cars, A.C. units etc., back across the border. This tax will make leaving financially difficult, but these companies are able to move between all 50 states, with no tax or tariff being charged.
Please be forewarned prior to making a very expensive mistake! THE UNITED STATES IS OPEN FOR BUSINESS.”
Trump’s tweetstorm echoed what he told workers assembled at the Indianapolis plant of the air-conditioning company Carrier last week, after striking a deal with the company to keep approximately 1,100 jobs in Indianapolis.
“Companies are not going to leave the United States anymore without consequences,” Trump told the workers. “Not going to happen. It’s not going to happen, I’ll tell you right now.”
The company had planned to move 2,000 jobs out of the country, but changed course after receiving a $7 million incentive package from the state to keep most of the jobs in the US.
Trump pledged to lower the US corporate tax rate from 35% to 15% to keep companies from outsourcing their operations, saying that the current tax rate is “terrible for business.”
Still, some conservatives are wary of the precedent Trump may have established when he intervened in a private company’s industrial policy.
“This is not a precedent we want to see — American presidents aren’t supposed to interfere on behalf of individual companies,” David Boaz, executive vice president of the Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank in Washington, told The Fiscal Times.
Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin, the 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee, slammed Trump’s deal with Carrier as “crony capitalism.”
“Foundational to our exceptional nation’s sacred private property rights, a business must have freedom to locate where it wishes,” Palin wrote in an op-ed for the Young Conservatives website.
“Republicans oppose this, remember?” she continued. “Instead, we support competition on a level playing field, remember? Because we know special interest crony capitalism is one big fail.”
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