Politico reports that President Trump’s Director of Trade and Manufacturing Policy is leading the push to cure our dangerous dependence on China for essential medical goods:
Peter Navarro, the leading China critic in the Trump administration, is seizing the moment.
The White House’s director of trade and manufacturing policy and the administration’s other China hawks are pushing to use the coronavirus crisis to press U.S. companies to end their dependence on foreign suppliers.
It’s an outcome Navarro and other advocates of U.S. factories in the Trump administration have sought for the past three years — what they see as a core piece of President Donald Trump’s 2016 promise to bring manufacturing jobs back home.
The efforts are more subtle than Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’ blunt declaration in January that coronavirus spreading abroad could “accelerate the return of jobs to North America.” But the message is the same: The U.S. needs to be less dependent on foreign markets in general — and China in particular.
The focus for now is on medicines and medical equipment. Free trade critics who have long criticized the outsourcing of manufacturing jobs for primarily economic reasons are now pointing out the issue is also a public health and national security concern.