Calvin Coolidge Says, July 11, 1930

Date: July 11, 1930

Location: Northampton, MA

(Original document available here)

Some foreign nations seem alarmed at our increases of duties on imports. Such alarm is not justified. On the whole, the increases are moderate and generally intended only to equalize the difference between foreign and domestic costs of production. It ought to be remembered that following all the recent increases in tariff rates have come large increases in imports. The only exception was due apparently to the Spanish War, but a year later large increases began. For over a generation each protective tariff has changed the basis but enlarged the market for imports. Of course, some lines may have been injured and others compelled to come in on a rate more fair to United States standards of wages and living. This is not saying the new tariffs promoted or retarded the increases. But the fact is higher rates did not decrease the former imports. The most reasonable explanation seems to be that protection encouraged business and a more prosperous people bought more goods abroad. Instead of being disturbed at the tariff foreign nations should know that our general imports will be large so long as our business is good.

Citation: Calvin Coolidge Says: Dispatches Written by Former-President Coolidge and Syndicated to Newspapers in 1930-1931 (Calvin Coolidge Memorial Foundation)

The Coolidge Foundation gratefully acknowledges the volunteer efforts of Greg Harkenrider who prepared this document for digital publication.

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