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White House Pulls Back From Expected Announcement on Imported Steel Tariffs

(Don Lee – Los Angeles Times)

President Trump turned his focus Thursday to trade and the troubles of the American metal industry amid reports that the administration is preparing to issue a decision on applying tariffs on imported steel and aluminum from China and the rest of the world.

But in a bizarre turn of events, the president appeared to pull back on making the much-anticipated announcement, even though the administration had abruptly summoned more than a dozen steel and aluminum manufacturing executives to the White House for a morning meeting in which Trump was apparently ready to declare the trade actions.

Trump himself added to the expectations by tweeting early Thursday: "Our Steel and Aluminum industries (and many others) have been decimated by decades of unfair trade and bad policy with countries from around the world. We must not let our country, companies and workers be taken advantage of any longer. We want free, fair and SMART TRADE!"

Administration officials did not give a reason for the apparent change in plans, but it was likely due to a previously scheduled visit to the White House on Thursday by a high-level emissary of Chinese President Xi Jinping. Click here to read more.