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President Trump's trade war with China won't bring back the jobs lost from the trade deficit with China, according to Robert Scott, a senior economist at the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute, whose work Trump cited on the campaign trail and during his presidency.

Expand chart
Chart: Economic Policy Institute; Chris Canipe/Axios

Why it matters: Here's an example of the trade debate's complexity. Some economists who agree with Trump that unfair trade has hurt U.S. workers don't think his tariff response will reverse the damage.

U.S. jobs have been impacted, Scott says in a new report, because "imports from China have soared while exports to China have increased much less.” In some regions of the U.S., the manufacturing sector is not growing as much as it could “if new factories were opening and existing plants were hiring more workers,” thanks to more production of goods in China, not the U.S.

  • China has to stop weakening the yuan, which makes Chinese exports less expensive for U.S. consumers, Scott told Axios. (In a recent report, the Treasury Department did not call out China as a currency manipulator, despite Trump's repeated accusations.)

Trump campaigned on the promise to bring manufacturing jobs back. Considering jobs in this sector have been on the upswing, he may claim some success. But Scott told Axios that tariffs, which could potentially raise costs for factories, won't be the reason for total revival of the industry.

The other side: Mark Perry, a scholar at conservative think tank American Enterprise Institute, says factory jobs have been declining since the 1940s, way before China entered the WTO, and technology is to blame, not trade.

  • "Those factory jobs ain’t ever comin’ back, no matter what Trump does," Perry said.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

15 mins ago - World

Gaza ceasefire under strain as Israel and Hamas feud over rebuilding

Egyptian excavators clear rubble on Wednesday in Gaza City. Photo: Emmanuel Dunand/AFP via Getty Images

The indirect talks between Israel and Hamas to stabilize the ceasefire in Gaza and begin the reconstruction process have made little progress, raising concerns of renewed violence.

State of play: Five weeks on from the ceasefire, Israel is threatening to hold up the reconstruction process, and Hamas this week rejected a UN plan to fund it, Israeli officials and Western diplomats tell me.

Pacific Northwest's hottest weather on record takes aim this weekend

Computer model projection showing the jet stream winds and "misery index" of surface temperatures on June 27, 2021. (Earth.nullschool.net). The circulation of jet stream winds shows the location of the "heat dome" over the Pacific Northwest.

A "historic" and potentially deadly heat wave is on tap for the Pacific Northwest into southwestern Canada this weekend into early next week, with never-before-seen temperatures possible in cities like Portland, Ore., and Spokane, Wash.

Why it matters: The heat wave will affect a region where many people lack central air conditioning, raising the likelihood for public health impacts. In addition, power demand is likely to spike at a time when hydropower resources are running relatively low due to drier than average conditions.

Supreme Court rules for cheerleader punished by school for Snapchat expletives

The U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, June 22, 2021. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Supreme Court ruled 8-1 Wednesday that a school district in Pennsylvania violated the First Amendment by punishing a cheerleader who used expletives in a Snapchat post sent while off campus.

Why it matters: The case pushed the boundaries of students' First Amendment rights and what schools can enforce outside school grounds, especially in the digital age.