Cleveland Clinic rolls out strategy to finance London hospital – Crain’s Cleveland Business (blog)

Lourenco Goncalves, CEO of iron ore miner Cleveland-Cliffs Inc., turns up in this Wall Street Journal story about the impact of steel tariffs on Minnesota politics.

Tariffs ordered by President Donald Trump “marked a victory for the Mesabi Iron Range region of northern Minnesota, boosting the prospects of a Republican congressional candidate,” the paper says, and the region’s mines “are ramping up capacity to meet growing demand for ore in steel mills as far away as Lake Erie.”

At the same time, through, the tariffs — and the resulting retaliatory tariffs on U.S. exports by other countries — “are creating concerns for Republican candidates in other districts, hurting farmers concentrated in the southern half of the state. The duties are also worrying Best Buy Co., Target Corp. and other politically connected businesses based around Minneapolis and St. Paul.”

Trump traveled last month to northern Minnesota, where Cliffs operates, last month to support Pete Stauber, a Republican former hockey player who local experts say has a good shot at replacing a retiring Democrat in the House. “The miners are very, very happy that they finally have a president that has their back, that stands up against the Chinese government,” Stauber says.

Goncalves tells the paper that he “can’t deny that it did help” when Trump rolled out broad tariffs on steel imports. He says the iron and steel industry can’t compete against Chinese steel that benefits from subsidies, low wages for workers and low environmental standards.

From the story:

In a measure of the region’s improving fortunes, Cliffs sold iron-ore pellets at more than $100 a ton in the first quarter, 32% more than a year earlier. Most Minnesotans link the reopening of mining operations to trade cases greenlighted near the end of the Obama administration, in addition to Mr. Trump’s broader steel tariffs.

“Anytime the mines do well, the rest of us feel somewhat of a benefit from it,” said Donn Kunnari, 62, who runs a restaurant and bakery in the town of Virginia after previously working for 42 years in Cleveland-Cliffs’ United Taconite mine. He supports Mr. Stauber.

Democratic candidates in the district, meanwhile, argue that Trump’s trade fights are disorganized and too broad, hitting Minnesota’s neighbors in Canada as well as China.