Take Us Back TPP 🙏
Trump says maybe we’ll join the TPP after all
Yesterday, President Trump announced that his administration was considering an attempt to rejoin the TPP. The move would be a major reversal for Trump: opposition to the deal was core to his populist campaign. He famously called TPP a “rape of our country”. Pulling the U.S. from the deal was one of his first major acts as president.
What’s the TPP again?
The Trans-Pacific Partnership is a free trade agreement that limits trade barriers among it’s 11 signatory countries and commits those countries to a set of trade standards (e.g., no child labor, no stealing copyrighted work, no abusing the environment). TPP countries include many large Asian economies, making the TPP a challenge to Chinese economic domination in Asia.
The Week: Trump's embarrassing about-face on TPP
The right sees rejoining the TPP as a shrewd way forward in the U.S.’s trade conflict with China. If the U.S. joins the TPP, the trade group becomes larger - it becomes a stronger challenger to Chinese economic power in Asia. Plus, more access to the TPP markets for American agricultural products would counteract the effect of Chinese tariffs on imported crops from the U.S., making Trump’s base in farm states happy.
The left sees this announcement as an embarrassing flip-flop for Trump: he’s walking back a major campaign promise and his most “anti-globalist” move as president. The administration says they’ll renegotiate the deal to be more favorable for the U.S. - but articles from the left point out that, since 11 nations already signed the deal last month after lengthy negotiations, it’s unlikely that meaningful changes will be made now.
So should we be down with TPP?
Yes! Getting more countries on board with American economic values (including human rights protections) and lowering trade barriers is good for the U.S. Limiting China’s economic influence is good for the U.S. TPP was a good deal when Obama pursued it, it was a good deal when both Trump and Hillary denounced it in the campaign, and it’s a good deal now. Flip flop or not, Trump should rejoin.
Ready to trade
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