Trump continues attacks on Milwaukee-based Harley-Davidson

Posted at 9:30 AM, Jul 03, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-03 11:55:39-04

MILWAUKEE -- For the second straight week, the President of the United States is using his Twitter account to criticize Milwaukee's iconic motorcycle producer.

President Donald Trump shared this tweet Tuesday morning.

This came after the President's repeated tweets criticizing Harley-Davidson's decision to move some of its production operations overseas following a series of international tariff announcements which began with Trump's announced tariffs on products like steel and aluminum, and followed up with European tariffs on Harley-Davidson motorcycles and other products.

Trump warned the iconic American brand last week that any shift in production "will be the beginning of the end."

"The Aura will be gone and they will be taxed like never before!" Trump said in one of several tweets in late June about Harley-Davidson. It was unclear what the president was referring to or how he could impose taxes on a single company.

Trump offered no initial clarity when he was asked about tariffs during a White House photo-op with Congress members.

"Harley-Davidson is using that as an excuse and I don't like that because I've been very good to Harley-Davidson and they used it as an excuse," he said in response. "And I think the people who ride Harleys aren't happy with Harley-Davidson and I wouldn't be either."

The President followed up further with Charles Benson of WTMJ sister station TODAY'S TMJ4, saying he was disappointed in the company.

The president has held up the motorcycle maker as an example of a U.S. business harmed by trade barriers in other countries. But Harley-Davidson had warned last year against responding to foreign trade barriers with higher American tariffs, saying the levies could negatively impact sales.

The company reiterated that it was moving some production of motorcycles destined for sale in the EU to its existing international facilities to "address the additional tariffs imposed by the EU." It did not respond directly to Trump.