While the media have been fully fixated on the imminent confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, President Trump has once again proven his trade strategy is paying off.
In case you missed it, President Trump has effectively replaced the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which he has promised to do since his election campaign, even though the institutional elites said this was impossible.
In the final hours leading up to a U.S.-imposed deadline, Canada relented and agreed to join a new agreement that President Trump had negotiated with Mexico. As a result, the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) was born.
All that is left now is for Congress and the legislative bodies of Canada and Mexico to sign off on the deal.
This was a critical step in President Trump’s effort to bring fairness back into U.S. trade policies. I discuss this in my New York Times best-seller “Trump’s America: The Truth About Our Nation’s Great Comeback.”
This updated trade regime with Mexico and Canada will mean auto industry jobs will return to North America from overseas. By 2020, cars sold in the U.S. that do not have at least 75 percent of their parts manufactured in the U.S., Canada, or Mexico will face tariffs. This percentage under NAFTA was 62.5 percent.
Further, the North American auto manufacturing playing field will be leveled under the new agreement. By 2023, 40 percent of the work done on cars made in the U.S. Mexico and Canada, will have to be completed by workers making at least $16 an hour.
Additionally, companies – particularly those in Mexico – will have to operate under new environmental and labor regulations that are more in line with regulations faced by companies in the United States.
This is a great example of how President Trump is not a traditional conservative – but is instead extremely pro-American.
Republicans are not typically associated with more stringent environmental or labor rules, but in this case it will ensure that fair competition is maintained within the North American automotive sector. That’s a key point that was missing from NAFTA that led to many jobs leaving America.
The new agreement also puts in place much tougher rules about protecting intellectual property. This will mean a great deal to American manufacturers and innovators.
Drug companies, for example, spend billions of dollars to research, develop and deploy new medications, only to see foreign countries effectively ignore their patent rights. That means U.S. patients are providing a disproportionate share of the return on investment for biopharmaceuticals.
In other words, foreign countries are freeloading off of U.S. patients. Under the new agreement, biopharmaceutical propriety information will be protected for at least a full 10 years, bringing the rules closer to alignment with the United States. The result will be more dollars flowing to research and development, leading to more new cures and treatments.
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker can take some credit for one of the biggest successes of the new agreement. For years, he has fought to pressure Canada to open up its highly protected and unfair dairy market.
In fact, Walker’s fight with the Canadian dairy trade is where much of this focus on Canada started. That tightly controlled dairy market is set to loosen up, which will be a significant boon to dairy farmers in Wisconsin and surrounding states.
Virtually everyone in the elite media is missing – or ignoring – that this updated, stronger relationship with our neighbors will help give President Trump better leverage to fight for American interests in trade negotiations with Europe and Asia.
This is, of course, anathema to the old-guard elites who believe that American administrations should put global interests ahead of our own.
At every turn, the elites have criticized President Trump for his use of tariffs – or the threat of tariffs – in trade negotiations. They have consistently cried that the president’s policies on trade would lead to a worldwide economic recession. This is the narrative the elite media have happily parroted.
Yet The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that the strong performance and continual improvement of the U.S. economy is actually lifting government bond yields. This, among other indicators, proves that the sky-is-falling, doomsday warnings of the elite globalists have simply not materialized.
The elites have not come around to the idea that trade and diplomacy are separate. Unfair trade agreements destroy U.S. jobs. The objective of U.S. trade policy should be job creation – not international relations.
While this may shock the conscience of globalists on network news and at institutions like the Council on Foreign Relations, it has been understood for decades by the U.S. working class. President Trump was simply the first to listen.
When will the elite U.S. media wake up to reality and see that the president is making good deals for Americans?