President-elect Donald Trump plans to fulfill his trade negotiation campaign promises on Day 1 of his administration, according to a transition team memo obtained by CNN.
The 200-day plan, which may have establishment politicians in Washington, D.C. worried, is built around five main principles, with an extra focus on manufacturing jobs. The memo notes that aspects are subject to change before Trump assumes the presidency, and that its contents are for “discussion purposes only.”
The memo takes aim at both the Republican and Democrat elite who have long tried to form an “international community” while giving American priority second-hand treatment.
“The Trump trade plan breaks with the globalist wings of both the Republican and Democratic parties,” the document states. “The Trump administration will reverse decades of conciliatory trade policy. New trade agreements will be negotiated that provide for the interests of US workers and companies first.”
Trump’s war against the establishment is also backed by the support of Steve Bannon, a man who was recently elevated to Trump’s chief strategist. Bannon has made a career out portraying the Republican elite as out-of-touch.
“The Republican establishment has more distaste for you than the progressive left,” Bannon said in a 2012 speech to Alaska activists gathered at the Conservative Political Action Conference. “I realize that’s a hard thing to embrace.”
In regards to trade policy, Trump plans on renegotiating or withdrawing from the North American Free Trade Agreement, stopping the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal, eliminating unfair imports, ending unfair trade practices, pursuing bilateral trade deals and returning manufacturing jobs.
Trump has ordered the Commerce Department and International Trade Commission to begin studying what the possible consequences of withdrawing from NAFTA. At the end of the of the document, it stresses the need to pay “extra consideration to the effects such a policy change may have on the middle class, manufacturing and service sector workers, and foreign direct investment into the United States.”
After taking care of NAFTA, Trump will turn his focus towards China by seeing if the can be labeled a currency manipulator, and begin forging bilateral trade agreements.
The document does note there might be negative repercussions of withdrawing from NAFTA but the impact could be mitigated if bilateral trade deals with Canada and Mexico were pursued.
For those who have been following Trump’s transition phase, these plans should come as no surprise. The president-elect has already drafted and signed a “Contract With The American Voter” that focuses on specific action to protect U.S. workers.
In his contract, Trump also expresses a desire to “direct the Secretary of Commerce and U.S. Trade Representative to identify all foreign trading abuses that unfairly impact American workers and direct them to use every tool under American and international law to end those abuses immediately.”
The Republican outsider also promises to “lift the restrictions on the production of $50 trillion dollars’ worth of job-producing American energy reserves, including shale, oil, natural gas and clean coal.”
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