In Economic Warning Signals, Trump Sees Signs of a Conspiracy


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Mr. Navarro, appearing on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” blamed the Fed for raising interest rates “too far, too fast,” adding that “they have cost us a full point” of growth in gross domestic product.

Mr. Trump has also struck an increasingly strident economic tone.

“You have no choice but to vote for me because your 401(k), everything is going to be down the tubes” if Democrats win, he told a crowd at a campaign rally in Manchester, N.H., last week. “Whether you love me or hate me, you’ve got to vote for me.”

The rally was one a few departures from a relatively low-profile period during a nearly two-week trip to his club in Bedminster, where he typically spends part of August. He also took official trips to El Paso, Tex., and Dayton, Ohio, after the gun massacres there, and he went to Pennsylvania ostensibly to talk about energy sources, but instead delivered remarks indistinguishable from those at one of his rallies.

But the dyspeptic diatribes came in spurts, and the president whipsawed between frustration and freewheeling meetings and golf outings, including one on Saturday with the president of the P.G.A. and the chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, according to two people familiar with his playing partners. Still, Mr. Trump was frustrated by the news media’s coverage of his rally in New Hampshire. He repeatedly complained about misleading pictures of empty seats, or that attendance at the arena had beat Elton John’s record crowd there, but no one was covering it.

Long-serving aides say that Mr. Trump understands that presidents face harder re-election battles in a bad economy, and he has made the issue central to his presidency.

But even as he returns to Washington facing new pressures, Mr. Trump did not seem to anticipate a quick resolution to the trade war. “The tariffs have cost nothing, in my opinion, or certainly very little,” in terms of pain to American consumers and businesses, Mr. Trump insisted, adding that “China is eating the tariffs.”

“China would like to make a deal,” he said. “I’m not ready.”




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