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The U.S. has recently had tariffs on the import of steel under two administrations by opposing political parties. I would assume, but don't know, that a 25% difference in the cost of raw materials should have a near-total effect on the viability of any company making steel parts. I would also assume that in this era a company's political orientation, if any, is almost always reflected in postings to Twitter or Facebook, and with some delay by reporting of campaign contributions. Therefore -- has there been any analysis of whether a company's political postings correlated with their likelihood of prevailing in a request for tariff exclusions or exemptions? (It would be of further interest to know if the political positioning led or lagged the regulatory response, and whether a difference in the direction or magnitude of the correlation was seen between administrations)

Per request, some background on tariff exclusions, which are per-product exceptions to the tariffs (2200 in 2020, 549 in 2021, 352 in 2022, and tariff exemptions which are per-company applications. To quote that article from February 2020, "the list that only has a 3% approval rate so far ... You’re not given a reason why they were rejected ... the same exemptions he was granted one year, he was denied the next." I didn't find mention of how many exemptions are valid currently - few news outlets distinguish between exclusions and exemptions, making keyword searches difficult.

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    I suspect there's a much higher correlation between getting those tariffs with where their employees live. Commented Aug 28, 2022 at 17:32
  • @Fizz - I certainly can't rule it out! It wasn't what I'd hypothesize, but that's what would make the experiment interesting. Commented Aug 28, 2022 at 17:42
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    In fact I'm hardly the first to suspect that jstor.org/stable/42705896 And so is retaliation e.g. by China seemingly calibrated taht way academic.oup.com/ej/article/131/636/1717/6029124 The EU openly admitted doing it like that. Commented Aug 28, 2022 at 17:46
  • I'm not sure the question is well researched. The primary point of tariffs is to promote local businesses over international businesses (local steel is not affected by steel tariffs) so local companies would not be looking for tariffs exclusions unless they can only get their materials outside of the US. And the US would not tariffs products and materials that it cannot produce locally.
    – uberhaxed
    Commented Aug 28, 2022 at 20:34
  • For a raw part that is mostly steel a 25% increase in steel price would change viability completely. But that just means that the maker of these parts will pass on the increase with their sale price. For a higher order manufacturer like a car maker a 25% price increase in steel parts definitely hurts but is not necessarily fatal. @uberhaxed Re your last sentence one would hope so but that is not how these tariffs were made. In theory the US could build the capaticity to produce locally but it would take many years.
    – quarague
    Commented Aug 29, 2022 at 6:37

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