Earlier today President Trump and first lady Melania welcomed the President of Argentina Mauricio Macri and his wife Juliana Awada to the White House.
One of the key topics on the agenda for President Macri is trade with the U.S., specifically the Argentinian export of lemons into the U.S. Understandably California, and to a lesser extent Florida, citrus growers are opposed to large scale imports of competing crops.
Additionally, during the customary Oval Office photo-op President Trump remarks about the ongoing NAFTA trade issues, and the phone calls yesterday between Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau and Mexico’s President Peña Nieto:
“If I’m unable to make a fair deal for the United States–meaning a fair deal for our workers and our companies, I will terminate NAFTA.”
The U.S. media are considerably invested in framing NAFTA trade issues around their ever-present need to oppose the White House (Trump Derangement Syndrome); and many of the recent media narratives around NAFTA are entirely false.
An example of “Fake News” surrounding the NAFTA negotiations can be found today from CNN. Example below:
[…] Before entering into formal negotiations with Canada and Mexico to renegotiate the free trade accord, Trump must first provide notice of his intent to renegotiate the trade deal. He has yet to do so. That move would kick off a 90-day period of consultation with Congress and industry groups before officially entering talks with the NAFTA partners. (link)
As outlined by Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross on April 13th (two weeks ago), and repeated in numerous remarks to media, the congressional notification letter of intent has been submitted; however, congress has not formerly accepted the administrations’ notification:
[…] Our message is simple – the games are over, and improper treatment of the United States will no longer be tolerated. We will approach future negotiations and actions with a clarity of purpose guiding us as we work to establish both free and fair trade. Unfortunately, NAFTA negotiations cannot begin until Congress accepts our 90-day notification letter in compliance with the Trade Promotion Act. But, under President Trump’s leadership, I have no doubt that we will be successful in rebalancing American trade in favor of American workers and businesses. (link)
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce lobbying group, along with various Wall Street entities, have a vested interest in delaying and obstructing any NAFTA renegotiation. Congress is paid by these lobbyists to oppose the Trump trade intention. This is the basic reason for the UniParty members in congress to push back against Secretary Ross and President Trump.
It’s a big club. The entire legislative and political process is based on a system of enrichment for the professional financial class. Congress, mostly republicans not democrats, is determined to keep U.S. worker interests out of the club consideration.
This has been steadily happening without any check within the system for over three decades. We are at an inflection point. Pay attention to the names who visibly surface against the Trump/Ross plan. Notice the similarity to prior positions. This is paid opposition within the Republican party:
BLOOMBERG […] Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross told CNBC on Thursday that the U.S. wants to target is the rules regarding country of origin of products sold under the deal. He said that Mexico’s trade deficit with China is approximately equal with their trade surplus with the U.S., indicating that products made in China are being sold under Nafta.
“The whole idea of a trade deal is to build a fence around participants inside and give them an advantage over the outside,” Ross said. “So there is a conceptual flaw in that — one of the many conceptual flaws in Nafta.”
“Scrapping Nafta would be a disastrously bad idea,” Republican Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska, who was a Trump critic during the campaign, said Wednesday in a statement. “It would hurt American families at the check-out, and it would cripple American producers in the field and the office.”
Republican Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona also blasted the idea on Twitter, writing, “Increasing trade barriers with CAN and MEX will result in lost jobs and higher consumer costs in #AZ. Strengthen #NAFTA, don’t abandon it.” (read more)
There are many CTH critics, who hide under the guise of conservative punditry and opinion, who refuse to accept the UniParty reality laying at the heart of these issues; and many well known media names who are paid to provide demonstrably false information about economic policy and manipulate public opinion/understanding.