Buttigieg: Supply Chain Troubles ‘Will Continue into Next Year’

Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union” that the supply chain backups at America’s ports “will continue into next year.”

Anchor Jake Tapper said, “We are seeing supply chain disruption causing everything from higher prices to longer waits for products. Moody’s warns that these supply chain disruptions, quote, ‘will get worse before they get better, ‘ unquote. do Americans need to prepare ourselves for this to get worse before it gets better?”

Buttigieg said, “Certainly, a lot of the challenges that we have been experiencing this year will continue into next year. But there are both short-term and long-term steps that we can take to do something about it. Part of what’s happening isn’t just the supply side. It’s the demand side. Demand is off the charts.”

Tapper said, “Many American companies, especially small businesses, as you note, are struggling to cope. One possible solution, President Biden lifting former President Trump’s tariffs on China to try to provide some relief. That’s not a panacea, but it could provide some relief. Will President Biden do that?”

Buttigieg said, “Every idea is being taken seriously. What we’re doing right now is to focus on the operations themselves. A lot of Americans might be surprised to learn our ports have not generally operated on a 24/7 basis. We have secured commitments to change that. The president announced that the ports of LA and Long Beach — Long Beach was piloting this for a few weeks. Collectively, those two ports are 40% of our container traffic. They’re now going 24/7. That’s not a simple thing to do overnight. It was a big commitment.”