Trump’s found an unexpected ally on his controversial decision to impose tariffs on foreign-made solar panels: former Vice President Al Gore.
“I don’t typically defend him,” Gore admitted, during a panel at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “I will say in this case it did not start with him. This was a trade action brought by private companies. They chose a kind of a midpoint in the range of alternatives.”
Trump announced earlier this week that the White House would slap a 30% tariff on most solar panels imported into the country. The taxes will slowly lower to 15% of the next four years.
The “midpoint” that Gore references is the fact that Trump could have raised tariffs to as much as 50%—but chose a much smaller tax.
The decision to raise taxes on foreign-made solar panels comes after accusations that China is importing heavily-subsidized, low-cost solar panels to the United States in order to protect their own domestic solar industry. China flooding the market has been crippling American solar panel makers.
“Could have been handled differently, should have been handled differently,” Gore added. “But it’s not an utter catastrophe.”