Trump lashes out at 'babies' complaining about tariffs, says they're the reason for massive new trade deal with Canada and Mexico

  • President Donald Trump credited recent tariffs as the key for getting through the US-Canada-Mexico Agreement (USMCA).
  • Trump also said people should stop whining about the tariffs.
  • "By the way, without tariffs, we wouldn't be talking about a deal," Trump said. "Just for those babies out there that talk about tariffs."

President Donald Trump on Monday slammed critics of his restrictive trade policy during a press conference announcing the new US-Mexico-Canada trade agreement (USMCA).

According to Trump, his recent steel and aluminum tariffs as well as threats of tariffs on imported cars were a key reason that the US, Canada, and Mexico were able to come to an agreement on a North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) update.

"By the way, without tariffs, we wouldn't be talking about a deal," Trump said. "Just for those babies out there that talk about tariffs. That includes Congress. 'Oh please don't charge tariffs.' Without tariffs, we wouldn't be standing here."

Trump launched the renegotiation of NAFTA just days after taking office in 2017 and official talks kicked off in August 2017. Little progress was made during the first year of talks, but a furious push to wrap up the deal before current Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto left office at the end of November helped to break the impasse.

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Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (R) and U.S. President Donald Trump shake hands during the G7 Summit in the Charlevoix town of La Malbaie, Quebec, Canada, June 8, 2018. REUTERS/Christinne Muschi
U.S. President Donald Trump meets with Canada?s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in a bilateral meeting at the G7 Summit in in Charlevoix, Quebec, Canada, June 8, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis
Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and G7 leaders Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May, France's President Emmanuel Macron, Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel, and U.S. President Donald Trump discuss the joint communique following a breakfast meeting on the second day of the G7 meeting in Charlevoix city of La Malbaie, Quebec, Canada, June 9, 2018. Adam Scotti/Prime Minister's Office/Handout via REUTERS. ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY.
Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel, U.S. President Donald Trump, Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and France's President Emmanuel Macron pose with other leaders for a family photo at the G7 Summit in the Charlevoix city of La Malbaie, Quebec, Canada, June 8, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman
Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (R) and U.S. President Donald Trump participate in the working session at the G7 Summit in the Charlevoix town of La Malbaie, Quebec, Canada, June 8, 2018. REUTERS/Christinne Muschi
U.S. President Donald Trump welcomes Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on the South Lawn before their meeting about the NAFTA trade agreement at the White House in Washington, U.S. October 11, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump welcome Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie Gregoire Trudeau on the South Lawn before the leaders' meeting about the NAFTA trade agreement at the White House in Washington, U.S. October 11, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau shakes hands with U.S. President Donald Trump as they meet about the NAFTA trade agreement in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, U.S. October 11, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
(L-R) US President Donald Trump, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attend the panel discussion "Launch Event Women's Entrepreneur Finance Initiative" on the second day of the G20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany, July 8, 2017. REUTERS/Patrik STOLLARZ/Pool
US President Donald Trump (C) talks with Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (L) and his wife of Canada's Prime Minister Sophie Gregoire (Hidden behind) as US First Lady Melania Trump (front L) and French President's wife Brigitte Macron (front R) talk with others after a family photo of the participants of the G20 summit and their spouses prior a concert at the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg, northern Germany, on July 7, 2017. REUTERS/LUDOVIC MARIN/Pool
U.S. President Donald Trump, Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attend the G7 summit in Taormina, Sicily, Italy, May 26, 2017. REUTERS/Tony Gentile TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (L) and U.S. President Donald Trump participate in a joint news conference at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 13, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
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The steel and aluminum tariffs will remain in place, Trump said, to bolster the American industries. US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer did clarify that talks on the tariffs were ongoing.

According to many economists, Trump's tariffs will push up costs for American consumers and business, which will ultimately produce a drag on the US economy.

In addition to the USMCA, Trump also credited the threat of auto tariffs for the European Union's willingness to negotiate a new trade agreement.

"I announced we're going to put a 20% tariff, could be 25% on their cars coming in and they immediately called and said we would like to start negotiations," Trump said. "We're having a successful negotiation. We'll see what happens. Who knows."

Trump also took aim at China, the president's main adversary on trade. The Trump administration recently escalated the trade war with China, imposing tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese goods.

"And China wants to talk very badly. And I said, frankly, it's too early to talk," Trump said. "Can't talk now because they're not ready. Because they have been ripping us for so many years, it doesn't happen that quickly. If politically people force it too quickly, you're not going to make the right deal for our workers and for our country."

SEE ALSO: The US, Canada, and Mexico's new trade pact looks a lot like NAFTA. Here are the key differences between the 2.

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