Today, President Donald J. Trump signed an executive order that effectively pulls the United States out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The trade deal, which was backed heavily by former President Barack Obama, was viewed as anathema to Democrats, trade unions, and Mr. Trump. The president vowed to end the deal, which he did. He also got some praise from Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), who said that he was glad TPP was dead, and he would be happy to work with Trump on future trade deals that protects America’s workers (via Washington Post/ Dave Weigel):
I am glad the Trans-Pacific Partnership is dead and gone,” Sanders said. “For the last 30 years, we have had a series of trade deals – including the North American Free Trade Agreement, permanent normal trade relations with China and others – which have cost us millions of decent-paying jobs and caused a ‘race to the bottom’ which has lowered wages for American workers. Now is the time to develop a new trade policy that helps working families, not just multinational corporations. If President Trump is serious about a new policy to help American workers, then I would be delighted to work with him.”
Hillary Clinton once called the agreement the “gold standard” for trade deals. She reversed her position when it proved to be widely unpopular with the Democratic base, once again proving to her detractors that she would say and do anything to get elected. Let it be said: an era of neo-populism has begun, especially regarding our trade negotiations.