“Tariff Man” has plenty of company: The United States has been taxing an array of offbeat imports for more than 200 years.
When President Trump’s next tariff round kicks in on December 15, iPhones made in (where else?) China will face a 15% levy, meaning even the cheapest iPhone 11 model will run an extra $100—assuming Apple doesn’t absorb the cost.
The notorious Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act takes aim at childhood itself, whacking toy dolls with a 90% import fee.
Before he would rise to the presidency in 1897, Representative William McKinley pushes a tariff bill through Congress that includes a 60% tax on imported eyeglasses and lenses. His future veep, the bespectacled Teddy Roosevelt (above), surely squints in disapproval.
The first explicitly protectionist trade measure in
U.S. history slaps a 30% tariff on foreign-made umbrellas (among much else)—bad news for Americans that September, when a tropical storm batters the former colonies.