Raymond Richman - Jesse Richman - Howard Richman
Richmans' Trade and Taxes Blog
Jeb criticizes Hilary for not supporting FastTrack
On Wednesday, Presidential candidate Jeb Bush strongly positioned himself in favor of giving President Obama FastTrack power so that he could negotiate the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) treaty without Congressional amendment. In an op-ed (Hillary Clinton’s Politically Motivated Flip Flop on TPP is Wrong), he wrote:
Jeb is right to criticize Hillary Clinton on trade. Democratic candidates for President say one thing when they are running, but do the opposite once elected. Their flip-flopping on trade should, indeed, be an issue.
In Jeb's favor, this op-ed also says something positive about his political courage. Jeb wants to give President Obama the "Fast-Track" power to negotiate the TPP treaty without any possible amendment by Congress. In contrast, most Republican voters want Congress to restrain Obama's power. According to a recent poll:
Obama may use that power to permanently destroy America's borders and economic future. For example, Dick Morris discovered that the negotiations so far would open America's borders to unlimited treaty-mandated immigration from Mexico and Central America.
Unfortunately, Jeb hasn't learned from the biggest mistake made by his brother. Increased exports don't help a country if imports increase even faster. By letting trade cheaters run intentional trade surpluses that gave us huge trade deficits, President GW Bush presided over eight years of declining American medium incomes. By the end of his presidency, his party had lost both branches of congress and the presidency.
TPP includes three countries that are already active trade cheaters (Vietnam, Malaysia and Japan). All three run intentional trade surpluses in order to steal their trading partners' industries. And they are not the only countries that would likely use TPP to cheat. Mexico didn't start cheating until after NAFTA passed.
As a result of TPP, our trade deficits would rise. The "free trade" treaty negotiated by Presidents GW Bush and Obama with trade-cheating South Korea has already cost the United States 100,000 jobs according to University of Maryland economist Peter Morici.
And it's not just manufacturing jobs lost. Investment and research facilities follow the factories overseas. America goes into relative economic decline, accompanied by a decline in relative military power. We need candidates who can learn from past mistakes, not candidates who keep repeating them.
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