Rare Interview – U.S. Trade Ambassador Robert Lighthizer Explains “Phase One” of U.S-China Trade Deal…

USTR Robert Lighthizer made a rare appearance in the media to discuss the “big picture”, and some specifics, around the U.S-China phase-one agreement.

Ambassador Lighthizer notes the principle challenge is generating an enforceable set of standards -within a written agreement- between a totally controlled communist economic system (China) and a free-market system (USA).  No other nation has ever tried, and there is no preexisting trade agreement to facilitate a mapping.  What Lighthizer is constructing will be what all nations will start to use going forward.  This is historic stuff.

Arguably, next to President Trump, USTR Lighthizer is one of the most consequential members of the administration. What he is constructing, with the guidance of President Trump, is going to influence generations of Americans.


[Transcript] MARGARET BRENNAN: This week, the U.S. and China agreed on the first phase of a trade deal that would roll back some American tariffs. It’s expected to be signed in early January. We’re joined now by the U.S. Trade Representative, Robert Lighthizer, the top negotiator in those talks with Chinese officials. Good to have you here.


MARGARET BRENNAN: It’s huge to have the two largest economies in the world cool off some of these tensions that have been rattling the global economy. But I want to get to some of the details here. China says still needs to be proofread, still needs to be translated. Is you being here today a sign this is done, this deal’s not falling apart?

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: So first of all, this is done. This is something that happens in every agreement. There’s a translation period. There are some scrubs. This is totally done. Absolutely. But can I make one point? Because I think it’s really important. Friday was probably the most momentous day in trade history ever. That day we submitted the USMCA, the Mexico-Canada Agreement with bipartisan support and support of business, labor, agriculture. We actually introduced that into the House and the Senate on this, which is about 1.4 trillion dollars worth of the economy- I mean of- of trade. And then in addition to this, which is about 600 billion, so that’s literally about half of total trade were announced on the same day. It was extremely momentous and indicative of where we’re going, what this president has accomplished.

MARGARET BRENNAN: Well, that is significant and I do want to get to the USMCA. But because the China deal just happened–


MARGARET BRENNAN: –and we know so little about it, I’d like to get some more detail from you. You said this is set.


MARGARET BRENNAN: You expect the signing in early January still.


MARGARET BRENNAN: What gives President Trump the confidence to say China’s going to go out and buy $50 billion worth of agricultural goods because Beijing hasn’t said that number?

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: First of all- let me say first of all, I would say this. When we look at this agreement, we have to look at where we are. We have an American system, and we have a Chinese system. And we’re trying to figure out a way to have these two become integrated. That’s what’s in our interest. A phase one deal does the following: one, it keeps in place three hundred and eighty billion dollars worth of tariffs to defend, protect U.S. technology. So that’s one part of it. Another part of it is very important structural changes. This is not about just agricultural and other purchases, although I’ll get to that in a second. It’s very important. It has IP. It has- it has–

MARGARET BRENNAN: Intellectual property–

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: –technology. It has- it has currency. It has financial services. There’s a lot of very- the next thing is, it’s- it’s enforceable. There’s an enforcement provision that lasts 90 days- it takes 90 days and you get real, real enforcement. The United States can then take an action if China doesn’t keep its commitments–

MARGARET BRENNAN: Put the tariffs back on?

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: Well, you would take a proportionate reaction like we do in every other trade agreement. So that’s what we expect. And finally, we’ll- we’ll find out whether this works or not. We have an enforcement mechanism. But ultimately, whether this whole agreement works is going to be determined by who’s making the decisions in China, not in the United States. If the hardliners are making the decisions, we’re going to get one outcome. If- if the reformers are making the decisions, which is what we hope, then we’re going to get another outcome. This is a- the way to think about this deal, is this is a first step in trying to integrate two very different systems to the benefit of both of us.

MARGARET BRENNAN: But that $50 billion number, is that in writing?

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: Absolutely. So- so here’s what’s in writing. We- we have a list that will go manufacturing, agriculture, services, energy and the like. There’ll be a total for each one of those. Overall, it’s a minimum of 200 billion dollars. Keep in mind, by the second year, we will just about double exports of goods to China, if this- if this agreement is in place. Double exports. We had about 128 billion dollars in 2017. We’re going to go up at least by a hundred, probably a little over one hundred. And in terms of the agriculture numbers, what we have are specific breakdowns by products and we have a commitment for 40 to 50 billion dollars in sales. You could think of it as 80 to 100 billion dollars in new sales for agriculture over the course of the next two years. Just massive numbers.

MARGARET BRENNAN: And that is important in no small part because also this is a key political constituency for President Trump going into the election, to take some pain off of American farmers who’ve been feeling it pretty strongly. I mean, the USDA projects that the soybean market won’t recover, I think til 2026 because of the damage that has been done to it.


MARGARET BRENNAN: Is that- how much of that, that political calculus, factored into the agreement to do this in phases? Because you didn’t want to do it in phases.


MARGARET BRENNAN: The Chinese did.

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: It was always going to be in phases. The question was, how big was the first phase? Anyone who thinks you’re going to take their system and our system that have- that have worked in a very unbalanced way for the United States and in- in one stroke of the pen change all of that is foolish. The president is not foolish. He’s very smart. The question was, how big- how big was the first phase going to be? This is going to take years. We’re not going to resolve these differences very quickly. On the agriculture point, that’s a good point. Let me say this. If you look at American agriculture in between USMCA, which is Canada and Mexico, China, Japan, Korea, we have rewritten the rules in favor of American agriculture on more than half, 56 percent, of all of our exports from agriculture. This, over the course of the last year, what this president has accomplished in this area, is remarkable. And you’re already- any one of these deals would have been monstrous. And the fact that we have all of them together–


AMB. LIGHTHIZER: –is- is great for agriculture.

MARGARET BRENNAN: I just want to button up on China, though, because the promise here was to do the things that American businesses have been complaining about for years–

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: Absolutely.

MARGARET BRENNAN: Not just the intellectual property theft, but subsidizing corporations in China in an unfair way for Americans. Cybertheft. None of that’s here.


MARGARET BRENNAN: That’s phase two. When do you start negotiating that?

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: So let me say first of all–

MARGARET BRENNAN: Is there a date?

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: Let’s talk about what’s here rather than what’s not here.

MARGARET BRENNAN: But that’s huge.

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: Absolute rules on–

MARGARET BRENNAN: That’s what President Trump said this whole trade war was starting on.

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: Look at tech- tech transfer is huge. That’s what’s in the 301 report. Look, we had a plan that- the president came up with a plan. We’ve been following it for two and a half years. We are right where we hope to be. Tech transfer, real commitments, IP, real specific commitments. I mean, this agreement is 86 pages long of detail. Agricultural barriers removed in many cases, financial services opening, currency. This is a real structural change. Is it going to solve all the problems? No. Did we expect it to? No. Absolutely not.

MARGARET BRENNAN: Do- the president said those talks in to start immediately, though. Do you have a date?

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: We don’t have a date, no. What we have to do is get this- we have to get the- the final translations worked out, the formalities. We’re going to sign this agreement. But I’ll tell you this. The second Phase 2 is going to be determined also by how we implement phase one. Phase one is going to be implemented right to the- right down to every detail.


AMB. LIGHTHIZER: It really is a remarkable agreement, but it’s not going to solve all the problems.

MARGARET BRENNAN: Well, we need to take a short break. We’ll be back with US Trade Representative Lighthizer in a moment.


MARGARET BRENNAN: Welcome back to Face the Nation and our conversation with US Trade representative Robert Lighthizer. Let’s talk about the other agreement. The House is set, Democratic controlled House, is set to vote on the USMCA, the free trade deal with Mexico and Canada that’s been rewritten. This is a win for the president to get this through, but Nanc- Speaker Pelosi and her caucus did have some last minute maneuvers here. Speaker Pelosi is quoted as saying we ate their lunch when it comes to the Trump administration.


MARGARET BRENNAN: How do you respond to that?

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: We had a great–

MARGARET BRENNAN: You made some concessions to labor here. That was not insignificant and it did irk some Republicans.

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: So- so- so let me- let me make a point about that. We had an election and the Democrats won the House, number one. Number two, it was always my plan and I was criticized for this, as you know, it was always my plan that this should be a Trump trade policy. And a Trump trade policy is going to get a lot of Democratic support. Remember, most of these working people voted for the president of the United States. These are- these are not his enemies. So what did we concede on? We conceded on biologics. Yes. That was a move away from what I wanted, for sure. But labor enforcement? There’s nothing about being against labor enforcement that’s Republican. The president wants Mexico to enforce its labor laws. He doesn’t want American manufacturing workers to have to compete with people who are- who are operating in- in- in very difficult conditions. So there’s–

MARGARET BRENNAN: But you don’t think there’s a political cost because Republican senators were annoyed to be cut out of this last phase?

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: Look it there are- there are always process issues. This bill is better now with the exception of biologics, which is a big exception. With the exception of biologics, it’s more enforceable and it’s better for American workers and American manufacturers and agriculture workers than it was before. For sure.

MARGARET BRENNAN: Mr. Lighthizer, Thank you very much for joining us.

AMB. LIGHTHIZER: Thank you for having me.

[End Transcript]

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56 Responses to Rare Interview – U.S. Trade Ambassador Robert Lighthizer Explains “Phase One” of U.S-China Trade Deal…

  1. noswamp says:

    What does “biologics”, mean in this context?

    Liked by 1 person

    • A2 says:

      “ “With this provision struck, the status quo remains, and drug makers will continue to receive only five years of protection in Mexico, and eight years of protection in Canada.”

      “ Multiple sources confirm that the latest version of the USMCA agreed upon by the White House and House Democrats strikes expanded protection for biologic drugs from the agreement completely. Over the summer, House Democrats vocally opposed granting 10 years of regulatory data protection (RDP) for biologics inventions—an increase from 8 years in Canada and from 0 in Mexico—arguing it would result in higher drug prices and delayed entry for biosimilars.
      In the U.S., biologics currently enjoy 12 years of protection. With this provision struck, the status quo remains, and drug makers will continue to receive only five years of protection in Mexico, and eight years of protection in Canada.
      According to CNN, “Democrats opposed enshrining the protections in the agreement because they want Congress to be able to legislate on drug pricing issues without being bound by the trade deal.”
      Republicans urged President Trump to keep the 10-year provision for biologic protection in the USMCA, but ultimately, in order to get Democrat support, it was struck. “I think removing it is a better option than weakening those years further,” said Congressman Kevin Brady (R-TX). “At the end of the day, U.S. protections are preserved.”

      Read more here.

      Liked by 5 people

    • California Joe says:

      Pharmaceutical drugs made from a biological source like animals.


      • iwasthere says:

        Incorrect. A biologic is a special category of a ‘living thing.’ For example having an animal make a drug, if the drug is just some complex compound, its still a ‘drug’ because it’s not living. Something like injecting live cells to permanently for example cure diabeties is a biologic. If it’s not a live thing going into the person, its considered a drug.


    • iwasthere says:

      A “biologic” is a special category of IP. –> A LIVING cell, virus or thing put into or back into the human body. It has a special category under US law (created by the so called AIA) via the “orange book.” This is the book of FDA approved use/treatments wherein if you register (get approved by FDA) a biologic you get automatic monopoly rights for a unique period (as I recall it’s like 8 years from approval). This category is separate from other US patent or FDA drug/device/procedure approval law. Sometimes called personalized medicine – think removing a t-cell from a person, genetically modifying that t-cell, making a bunch of copies – and then injecting that t-cell’ back into that person – and curing cancer. Of what if you could engineer a generic t-cell that would work for all people. Because a cell (or engineered virus) is ‘living’ it is considered a ‘biologic.’ and gets the special legal protection of a ‘regulatory’ monopoly via the FDA approval for the “orange book” for 8 years. This was the compromise that Bio got in the AIA mark-up which otherwise weakened (some would say devastated) US patent law. Hence the need for the special biologics category which is outside of US patent law.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. jonhabart says:

    Good God What an insufferable bitch.

    Liked by 16 people

    • Joebkonobi says:

      Thank you. My thoughts exactly!

      Liked by 2 people

    • mopar2016 says:

      Mr. Lighthizer is a great negotiator, I hear that he’s going to meet with Mexican trade representative Seade tomorrow. Seems that Mexico has a problem with the USMCA.
      It makes me wonder if Pelosi is trying to mess the agreement up.

      Liked by 4 people

    • Elle says:

      And today in our studio we have Robert Livingston who just completed the Louisiana Purchase. Welcome Ambassador Livingston So it seems you got some additional acreage but did you get California? Did you get Mexico???

      Liked by 6 people

    • “And that is important in no small part because also this is a key political constituency for President Trump going into the election, to take some pain off of American farmers who’ve been feeling it pretty strongly. I mean, the USDA projects that the soybean market won’t recover, I think til 2026 because of the damage that has been done to it.”

      She puts out that talking point, then swivels to another subject about “Phases”. Lighthizer dropped it and answered the question asked. But the false narrative, Ag in the US is suffering because of Tariffs, hangs out there.

      Cute. The FNM scored a point with that exchange.


    • Pale rider says:

      Put her ‘crowing’ in context. She lost her butt in everything, the whole agreement was Trumps idea. They lost in the economy! Impeachment! The democrats are a pile of steaming poop at this point. It’s like she chose the paper it was struck on flailing her arms around saying she cleaned up.
      And, democrats tout ‘equality’ they are the party of ‘consolation prizes’ so what’s this ‘ate their lunch’ nonsense. I thought winning was taboo to democrats. Hypocrites!
      Who’s side is she fighting for?
      Either the swamp is getting shallow, or Trump put some yummy chum on the surface. These deep swamp dwellers are appearing more and more, and are our enemies, ever notice that?

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Sentient says:

    Man, is she annoying. Let the poor man answer, for goodness’ sake. He did great. I wish he could have pointed out that while American farmers have been waiting for this deal to be done, their losses have been mitigated by government support that’s been funded by the tariffs.

    Liked by 8 people

  4. clulessgrandpa says:

    I can see that Trump is doing the right thing for America, not something that was politically motivated. He will go down as the best President ever. Solving the problems rather than just kicking the can everytime.

    Liked by 8 people

  5. Rynn69 says:

    As a segue from the John Ratcliffe article, what good is a strong (economic) America with a corrupted government and no system of justice? What good is any of it without equal justice under the law – a CRITICAL foundation to freedom?

    Perhaps Bill Barr does not GET that he cannot band-aid or bondo this FUBAR DOJ without:

    1. People (many) indicted and brought to justice
    2. Terminating all people involved in the coup from employment WITHOUT pensions – Barr still has conspirators employed!

    Bill Barr is tragically underestimating the American people’s EXPECTATION justice prevail – that does not mean 1 or 2 low-level indictments and compartmentalized malfeasance (FISA focus) as a-ok. Not a-ok, Mr. Barr. Not at all.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Robert Smith says:

      Well, changing the economic system from multi-national/globalist managed economy to a US-centered economy changes the money flow and, hence, the power dynamic. While this is done for the good of the American citizen it also attacks the DeepState from its flank.

      Attacking the DeepState from a full frontal banzai assault likely won’t get it done. Cutting out its source of power and buying influence weakens it.

      Liked by 4 people

  6. All Too Much says:

    Enough said:

    “the president came up with a plan. We’ve been following it for two and a half years. We are right where we hope to be.”

    Liked by 16 people

  7. Kerry Gimbel says:

    It’s a big win despite all the other things swirling around. All I know is we have been winning a lot more than we been losing, despite losing the House.
    I just have to believe everything else will eventually become a win. So I will take this win and not complain.
    A can almost hear a voice in the the interviewers head. No not another Trump win, not now when we are close to impeachment!

    Liked by 4 people

    • ALEX says:

      I’m a sucker for 3-4 Oval Office addresses a year, but with the President having done only one, it’s not in the cards.

      I do think by summer and the Convention he will have quite the theme put together. The Impeachment Hoax like Collusion and Kavanaugh etc are obviously the democrats Operation Chaos


    • Pale rider says:

      Look at it this way. They won the house and now own a shampeachment! The won the house and put forward ‘the gang’ to lead them. They won the house and own every bad idea and lost good idea they have obstructed. And we all see every single thing because they are to stupid to turn off the camera.
      This president has them scared to take a pee, in fear they will miss the toilet and be blamed for flood.
      Now, if they worked to better America this would all disappear. Proverbial ‘taken to the woodshed’.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. ALEX says:

    These venues are not the best place to get a message across, but what’s new. The President has missed many a big opportunity by not using the Oval Office address where he could get an unfiltered message out on these enormously consequential issues.

    I do like the fact their is a 90 day deadline to see implementation or consequences.


  9. kleen says:

    Does she have some kind of disfunction? What a weirdo! She leans forward so far, it looks like she wants to eat him. Her body movements look uncontrollable. She reminds me of the strange characters on SNL.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. A2 says:

    I posted on the previous Kudlow thread.

    A2 says:
    December 15, 2019 at 11:17 pm
    Nothing new to report as we only have the USTR fact sheet and the PRC statement. No joint announcement, no draft agreement, no signing date, a few more details. I am increasingly convinced neither side wants a deal.

    The US, as Lighthizer explained is trying to work with the PRC to bridge the vast divide between a free/fair market system and a planned command and control economy who conjure up data from the party handbook not reality.

    Lighthizer deserves a medal for taking on this task. The entire process so far is one for the history books.

    As I’ve said, the ball is in China’s court. USA 💯 PRC 0.

    Liked by 4 people

  11. konradwp1 says:

    Say Margaret, you vacuous bint, were you aware Vodka dissolves Polident?

    How exactly is the Pelosoid supposed to “eat Trump’s lunch” when she can’t even keep her teeth in her face?

    Liked by 5 people

  12. California Joe says:

    Energy (LNG and oil) is also included in Phase One of the agreement not just agriculture. We have a ton of LNG to export and China needs it big time. Energy Transfer (ET) is building a $5 billion LNG process facility in Lake Charles with Royal Dutch Shell primarily for the Asian market

    Liked by 1 person

    • A2 says:

      Except for this:

      ‘ Russia launches gas pipeline to China

      Power of Siberia symbolises Putin’s pivot to the east’


      Please use the sharing tools found via the share button at the top or side of articles. Copying articles to share with others is a breach of FT.com T&Cs and Copyright Policy. Email licensing@ft.com to buy additional rights. Subscribers may share up to 10 or 20 articles per month using the gift article service. More information can be found at https://www.ft.com/tour.

      Russia has begun gas supplies to China via the Power of Siberia pipeline, the largest gas project in its history and a symbol of Moscow’s diplomatic pivot towards Beijing at a time of worsening relations with the west.

      Dubbed “the contract of the century” by Russian gas group Gazprom, the $55bn deal with China’s oil and gas major CNPC will eventually allow for 38bn cubic metres in annual gas supplies to China via the 3,000km pipeline that crosses Siberia to the Chinese border in the south-east.

      The pipeline will allow Gazprom to significantly increase gas exports amid declining demand and gas prices in its traditional export markets of Europe and Turkey, which buy on average about 200bn cubic metres of gas a year. Work on the pipeline began shortly after the US and the EU introduced the first Crimea-linked sanctions against Russia.

      For China, Asia’s largest economy, the project will help to ensure its energy security amid declining domestic gas production and rising demand. It should also help combat air pollution in the coal-dependent north-eastern regions.”


      Liked by 1 person

    • Pegon Zellschmidt says:

      Long ET 👍

      Liked by 1 person

  13. A2 says:


    Worth a read.

    Partial Disengagement: A New U.S. Strategy for Economic Competition with China

    Aaron L. Friedberg

    The United States is now almost two years into its trade war with China. But despite the imposition of successive rounds of additional tariffs on an increasingly wide array of Chinese imports, the Trump administration has thus far been unable to coerce Beijing into accepting its most important demands. Moreover, the U.S. strategic endgame remains unclear.

    My new report, co-authored with Charles W. Boustany Jr, explains why China remains unlikely to offer meaningful concessions, and clarifies goals for U.S. strategy going forward. We argue:

    CCP-ruled China has long exploited advanced industrial economies – by pursuing a variety of predatory and market-distorting policies

    The CCP is exceptionally unlikely to offer any fundamental concessions on these policies – they are deeply embedded in China’s economic system and the CCP views them as essential to its hold on power

    Even if CCP-ruled China were to modify some of its more objectionable economic practices, so long as its domestic political regime remains unchanged, it will continue to pose a serious geopolitical and ideological challenge to the U.S.

    In light of these realities, the U.S. should pursue a four-part strategy for defending U.S. prosperity and security, by moving toward a posture of partial economic disengagement from China.
    1. CCP-ruled China has long exploited advanced industrial economies – by pursuing a variety of predatory and market-distorting policies

    Since the end of the Cold War, successive U.S. administrations have hoped that engagement with China would help tame it, and ultimately transform it. It was hoped that deepening China’s trade and investment with the U.S. and the rest of the world would:

    encourage the CCP regime to liberalize the Chinese economy;
    help China become a “responsible stakeholder” in the existing international order; and
    set in motion forces that would lead eventually to far-reaching political reforms.
    But China has exploited this policy of engagement to propel its own growth while avoiding economic or political liberalization. It has been following a predatory approach to its economic relations with the United States and the other advanced industrial democracies. Its now signature mercantilist policies include:

    market-distorting subsidies – especially in strategic sectors;
    constricted market access for foreign firms; and
    theft or coerced extraction of intellectual property and other foreign technology.
    2. The CCP is exceptionally unlikely to offer any fundamental concessions on these policies – they are deeply embedded in China’s economic system and the CCP views them as essential to its hold on power

    For the most part, the policies to which the United States and the other advanced industrial countries have long objected are deeply embedded in China’s mercantilist-Leninist system.

    These policies are “features” of that system rather than mere “bugs”: they are manifestations of the CCP leadership’s belief that its ability to exert control over the direction of the economy is essential to retaining the party’s grip on political power and eventually achieving its grand strategic objectives.

    From the CCP’s zero sum perspective, the primary purpose of all economic activity, and thus the proper goal of economic policy, is to:

    enhance the power of the party in relation to all other actors in Chinese society; and
    increase China’s wealth and power with respect to those of all other nations in the international system.
    This means that while some kind of superficial, face-saving U.S.-China trade deal is still possible and perhaps even probable over the next twelve months (given the mounting costs of the current stand-off for both sides) the likelihood of deep, meaningful Chinese concessions on fundamental structural issues remains exceedingly low.

    3. Even if CCP-ruled China were to modify some of its more objectionable economic practices, so long as its domestic political regime remains unchanged, it will continue to pose a serious geopolitical and ideological challenge to the U.S.

    China today is vastly richer and stronger than it was three decades ago, but it continues to be ruled by an oppressive authoritarian regime. Far from becoming a “responsible stakeholder” or a status quo power, the CCP regime is starting to:

    express more openly its dissatisfaction with existing institutions and prevailing norms; and
    behave in ways that are increasingly assertive and even aggressive.
    The challenges that arise from this situation are a result of:

    China’s sheer size; coupled with
    the character of its domestic political regime: the dangerous ways in which the CCP perceives threats, defines its goals, and pursues them.
    These factors make CCP-ruled China a threat to the security, autonomy, and potentially even to the survival of the United States and the other market-based democracies.

    The geopolitical ambitions of the CCP regime, and the extent to which it wields power over all Chinese economic actors, mean that the United States can no longer afford to permit all these entities virtually unrestricted access to its own economy and society. Continued, unrestrained openness would pose a threat to the nation’s security and future welfare.

    4. In light of these realities, the U.S. should pursue a four-part strategy for defending U.S. prosperity and security, by moving toward a posture of partial economic disengagement from China:

    Achieve a ceasefire in the current tariff war. The U.S. should avoid a superficial deal that would relieve pressure on Beijing without extracting fundamental concessions. Instead, it should seek at least a temporary settlement that reduces costs to U.S. consumers and producers, while retaining restrictions on select Chinese imports.

    Strengthen defensive measures to reduce vulnerabilities to surveillance, sabotage, or disruption and to slow diffusion of critical technologies to China. This will require constricting the outward flows of some technology to China, while regulating the inward flows of some Chinese goods, capital, and people to the U.S.

    Invest in innovation, technology, and education. These investments must come from both public and private sources. Boosting public-sector investment will require addressing long-standing fiscal imbalances.

    Strengthen trade and investment relationships, cooperation, and information sharing with close allies. While continuing to seek reform of multilateral institutions, the U.S. should work with key allies to bolster a partial (as opposed to a global) open trading system. This system should be built on high-standard plurilateral trade agreements and common approaches to securing data and promoting economic development.
    Changing CCP-ruled China’s behaviour remains a worthy goal. But with the CCP unlikely to change, the U.S. needs to focus on formulating a strategy for securing its long-term prosperity in light of that reality. These four principles should lay the foundation for that strategy.

    Aaron L. Friedberg is Professor of Politics and International Affairs at Princeton University. He is the co-author of Partial Disengagement: A New U.S. Strategy for Economic Competition with China.

    Liked by 2 people

    • ABN says:

      Article provides a good overview.

      I am sure PDJT knows this and is acting accordingly. It has to be obvious to anyone who has studied China that “…so long as its domestic political regime remains unchanged, it will continue to pose a serious geopolitical and ideological challenge to the U.S.”, as stated above.

      Lighthizer clearly says this deal depends on whether the reformers or hardliners prevail. Very unlikely reformers will prevail anytime soon.

      As sundance has said, a workable deal is very unlikely and not even what PDJT wants. I hope I paraphrased that well enough. I expect PDJT to allow the CCP to continue displaying bad behavior as USA continues decoupling from them.

      USMCA and new deals with UK (and probably EU) will further tip trade scales in our favor. I don’t think anyone knows what is going to happen in China over the next ten years. It does seem all but certain that their decades of taking advantage of USA are over as long as PDJT remains in office.

      Liked by 2 people

  14. Graham Pink says:

    Is Robert Lighthizer Matthew Lillard dad?
    Asking for a friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Jlwary says:

    I feel like he didn’t say anything because he was cut off so much. I didn’t watch, but read the transcript. Brutal.

    I’ll stick to the fact sheet, lol

    Liked by 1 person

  16. calbear84 says:

    Great to hear Amb. Lighthizer lay out the transformation of global trade that is the core of MAGA’s economic agenda! He spells it out in simple terms that even Journolists like Maggie Brennan can comprehend.


  17. burginthorn says:

    “Economic security is national security.”
    – President Donald J Trump

    Liked by 2 people

  18. The Best President and He’s Great Team Doing a Great job for America,
    GOD Bless Them and America,

    Liked by 1 person

  19. 2Alpha says:

    Brennan lacks some real basic skills. She seems to be living in her own head and creating a self-fulfilling dialog with herself. Having a guest to ‘interview’ seems superfluous…


    • Buck Turgidson says:

      I enjoyed reading the transcript but absolutely cannot watch that annoying insufferable communist lefty womyn. Constantly interrupts non-communist guests and always with a skeptical gotcha type question that disrupts their train of thought. What a miserable downer she is.

      Liked by 3 people

  20. Michael Hennessy says:

    When in the last 2 1/2 years has Nancy ever ate the President’s lunch? She looks a bit undernourished to me.

    Sound Bite!

    Liked by 2 people

  21. rjones99 says:

    She doesn’t look like she bathes very often.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Clint says:

    Reading that transcript, the one thing that’s absolutely clear: the talk-all-over-each-other format of the Sunday Morning shows is utterly awful at actually conveying important information or even just developing arguments.

    Even Twitter is better.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. Pegon Zellschmidt says:

    Margaret doesn’t care about any explanation of the agreement, only her talking points. Note how she’s looking down reading over her next “It isn’t really any good, is it?” question.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Mike in a Truck says:

    All I would say is that the last 4 turds that occupied the Oval Office did nothing …except sell out America. That’s the real issue that should be hammered home on every DNC propagandists talk show.

    Liked by 3 people

  25. bkrg2 says:

    Thank you Nervous Nancy for leading the USMCA. You are such an amazing woman – negotiating with both Mexico and Canada to write such a historic trade agreement. Let’s hope the resistance Republicans don’t hold it up for a year!

    Hard to believe that half the idiots in this country truly think the Demonrats should get credit for USMCA…

    Liked by 1 person

  26. CharterOakie says:

    SD — a health warning would have been welcome:

    In order to hear USTR Lighthizer, we have to hear and put up with that lightweight, out-of-her-depth twit, Margaret Brennan.

    That’s at best a break-even proposition.


  27. Once a China Deal 1.0 passes, other nations will seek to use it for their China-Deal template.

    Who thinks China’s going to give other nations the same deal as the USA? … NOPE.

    Suddenly, other nations realize they have ZERO leverage with China
    … UNLESS they can get the USA to use its LEVERAGE help them
    … ONCE they’ve got a BILATERAL Trade Deal with the USA!
    … But ONLY if that deal includes BILATERAL sanctions on China
    … And ONLY if that deal excludes 5g INFILTRATION by China
    … And ONLY if that deal precludes Belt-and-Road Infrastructure DEPENDENCY on China.

    Anyone still wondering where POTUS will get his LEVERAGE for China Deal 2.0?
    … And whether it’ll include China’s WITHDRAWAL from military-driven EXPANSIONISM.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Tiffthis says:

    Why does she ask questions? She answered them herself before the guest can start replying 🤷🏼‍♀️


  29. Fools Gold says:

    Nancy Pig thinks she would got a win for USMCA labor (union support) enforcement. Fact is Trump wanted that it to begin with so he got a win with Nancy Pig at the helm is to stupid to even know she gave Mr. Trump that very thing. HeHe, The Genius businessman plans ahead and uses Dem stupidity to win again MAGA style!

    Liked by 1 person

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