INDIANAPOLIS – Rep. Braun has made clear he thinks reactions to tariffs have been “overdramatized,” but it’s unclear whether his own business interests have sustained any damage from the recent tariffs through either his auto parts business or his agricultural holdings.
Hoosier farmers and manufacturers have been struggling to cope with the recent tariffs, as the price of corn and soybeans has fallen below the cost of production, and companies in Rep. Braun’s hometown have threatened to move production out of the country because of the tariffs. Publicly, they haven’t had an ally in Rep. Braun, who has called on farmers to accept the “short-term pain” of tariffs.
However, Rep. Braun has not mentioned whether the tariffs have affected his own business interests, including Meyer Distributing’s heavy reliance on Chinese-made auto parts. While Rep. Braun continues to lie about his company being “made in America,” his own line of auto parts is primarily made in China. Additionally, a substantial number of Rep. Braun’s third party suppliers are also based in China and other countries, likely affecting the price of the products he distributes. Given the significant tariffs being slapped on Chinese steel and aluminum imports, it’s doubtful that his own business has not been impacted.
Rep. Braun’s agricultural holdings are also at risk thanks to recent tariffs that have hit corn and soybeans. According to his personal financial disclosure form, Rep. Braun’s vast real estate investments include thousands of acres of farmland – much of which is in corn and soybeans, two of the crops most harmed by the tariffs being leveled on Hoosier farmers.
Rep. Braun has repeatedly relied on the government, including accepting subsidies in the past for his agricultural holdings and tax credits for his company so he could create jobs in Indiana –even though he chose to rely on Chinese labor – so it would not come as a surprise if he had applied for tariff relief from the Department of Treasury as well. However, he has not made clear either way if his revenues have changed due to the tariffs he supports.
“Rep. Braun has no problem criticizing Hoosier farmers and businesses for sounding the alarm over tariffs, but Hoosiers don’t know whether his own Chinese-made auto parts and farmland investments are being impacted either,” said Michael Feldman, spokesman for the Indiana Democratic Party. “If Rep. Braun wants Hoosier manufacturers and farmers to trust him to have their backs in Washington, he should start by explaining how much the tariffs have affected him, and whether he’s relying on them to once again fill his wallet at their expense.”