Tuesday, January 24, 2017

from Politico--quote of the day--

McCain: Without trade pact, China will be economically dominant

President Donald Trump’s decision to back the United States out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement will ultimately cede economic and political power to China, Sen. John McCain said Tuesday morning, making it a decision that “is not good for the United States of America.”
“My concern is that we consign the Asia pacific region to China,” McCain (R-Ariz.) said Tuesday on “CBS This Morning.” “They have now a very significant economic role, where 60 percent of the world's economy is in the Asia-Pacific region, and we are stepping back. I have talked to leaders of Asian countries who have all said that this will cede the field to China. And that, to me, is not good for the United States of America.”
Trump’s Monday executive order withdrawing from the TPP is likely to kill the 12-nation deal entirely, given that it would be unlikely to function without the participation of the massive U.S. economy. The agreement was negotiated by President Barack Obama’s administration, which tried unsuccessfully to ratify it before leaving the White House. Democrat Hillary Clinton also opposed the deal, meaning it likely would have been dead regardless of who won last year’s presidential election.
On the campaign trail, Trump railed against the TPP, an agreement he once referred to as “a rape of our country.” He said the deal would cost America jobs and also pledged to back the U.S. out of the North American Free Trade Agreement, another trade agreement that Trump blamed for a decrease in American manufacturing. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said Monday that Trump remained committed to seeking a better North American trade deal, either be renegotiating within the NAFTA framework or backing out of it entirely.
McCain, one of a small handful of Republicans to criticize Trump for leaving the TPP, said the president’s job-protecting rationale for abandoning the deal does not hold up. The TPP was a “largely level” agreement, McCain said, giving American workers the advantage.
“I guess it all depends on your fundamental belief, and that is, with a level playing field… the United States worker can compete with any other worker in the world. And I believe that the American worker is the best, by far,” McCain said. “I believe that this is harmful. And over time, it will give the Chinese a greater domination economically.”

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