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Tom Cotton says sacrifice of Americans paying tariffs is "minimal" compared to those serving overseas

Cotton on China tariffs: "Some sacrifice" for US
Sen. Tom Cotton on China tariffs: "There will be some sacrifice on the part of Americans" 06:53

As the U.S. and China inch closer to an all-out trade war, Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton says that the sacrifice Americans will pay for President Trump's tariffs are "minimal" compared to those serving overseas. President Trump has maintained that Americans would not be fronting the brunt of the cost for tariffs, but many, including the president's own economic adviser, say they will. 

"There will be some sacrifices on the part of Americans, I grant you that, but I also would say that sacrifice is pretty minimal compared to the sacrifices that our soldiers make overseas that are fallen heroes that are laid to rest in Arlington make," Cotton told "CBS This Morning" when asked about the impact of tariffs on farmers in his own state of Arkansas. 

Cotton, the author of "Sacred Duty: A Soldier's Tour at Arlington National Cemetery," said that in the long term, the goal is to make sure that the U.S. "remains preeminent as a global super power both in the economic and the security" worlds. 

The price tag for that "preeminence" on the average American family, according to trade experts falls between $700 to $1,000. 

"If we remain the world's largest economy and the world's largest economic super power in the short term, I say it is worth that cost," said Cotton. 

On Friday, the U.S. increased tariffs from 10 percent to 25 percent on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, escalating a prolonged trade feud between the world's largest economies. The tariff hike was announced by Mr. Trump last week after he accused China's trade representatives of backtracking on a potential agreement. 

Economic experts have warned, however, that trading tariffs with China could leave American consumers paying more at the register and farmers coping with a shrinking export market. 

Cotton said that when speaking to his own constituents in the agricultural field, farmers "understand China is a serious competitor to the United States and wants to displace us around the world and when you look at the sacrifices that soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines make around the world, they're willing to bear some of those sacrifices in the short term to hopefully in the long term ensure our long-term prosperity and security."

He added that he doesn't know of many farmers or ranchers in Arkansas "who were confused about what was going to happen."

"They from the very beginning...knew that overseas markets were vital to their prosperity," he said.

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