Deep in Montana’s ag country, ranchers’ and farmers’ support of President Donald Trump is being put to the test as the president’s bellicose threats of a trade war with China risk their livelihoods.
Residents here have a deep libertarian streak and like the agriculture industry nationwide, they stood in firm support of Trump in the 2016 elections.
Some of that support appears to be wavering in the face of possible Chinese tariffs against Montana staples such as beef and wheat. Others remain stalwart in their backing of the Republican president.
Eastern Montana rancher Fred Wacker says a deal worth up to $200 million between cattle producers in the state and a Chinese e-commerce company never would have happened without Trump. Wacker says he’s hopeful the deal won’t be scuttled.