[Homestead] Politics, it's still the economy, in the rust belt stupid.
genegerue at ruralize.com
Mon Sep 20 11:52:48 EDT 2004
>Funny thing about the folks from the rust belt, like myself ( from
>Michigan, family still in the auto industry), is that the single thing
>they attribute most with the loss of jobs, is the NAFTA agreement Clinton
>signed. Like you say, they seem to think the guy in the white house is the
>one to take the credit or heat, and Clinton started this snowball rolling.
Actually, Bush I started the NAFTA snowball rolling.
As a Clinton supporter, I was strongly against NAFTA. I don't recall all
the politics of it but I think the Pubs were in control of the DC
Whorehouse at the time.
I looked for it in Clinton's book and found this on page 432:
"In the week leading up to the first [presidential] debate, I finally
endorsed the controversial North American Free Trade Agreement, which the
Bush administration had negotiated with Canada and Mexico, with the caveat
that I wanted to negotiate side agreements ensuring basic labor and
environmental standards that would be binding on Mexico. My labor
supporters were worried about the loss of low-wage manufacturing jobs . . . .
Page 540: "On the nineteenth, my forty-seventh birthday, I announced that
Bill Daley of Chicago would become the chair of our task force on the North
American Free Trade Agreement. Six days earlier, with Canada and Mexico, we
had completed the side deals to NAFTA on labor and environmental rights,
which I had promised in the campaign, as well as one protecting our markets
from import "surges." Now that they were in place, I was ready to go all
out to pass NAFTA in the Congress. . . . NAFTA would be a very different
fight from the budget. A lot of Republicans would support it, and we had to
find enough Democrats to go along over the objections of the AFL-CIO."
At http://www.ndu.edu/library/n2/n025603H.pdf there is background on NAFTA.
George H.W. Bush hurried the NAFTA agreement to conclusion before the
Republican convention, using it to show Clinton as weak on trade issues. It
would appear that Clinton had to embrace NAFTA to defeat Bush, but he
managed to get the labor and environmental side agreements in order to have
the backing he needed.
By the way, while I was digging this out I found that Bush II wants to
expand NAFTA to include Latin American countries. I also found that of
those members of the DC Whorehouse who voted for NAFTA, a minority remain.
So if any president wants to change it, the votes probably exist. But it
would be bloody; big business was and is the driving force behind trade
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