Obama v. NAFTA

Obama, fresh from signing two buy-American laws and quoting from the Book of Revelations, tried to put a rest to the confusion in the West Wing by giving our trade and diplomatic program a clear direction: protectionism and unilateralism:

Mexico Imposes Tariffs on U.S. Amid Trucking Dispute (Update1) – Bloomberg.com

March 17 (Bloomberg) — Mexico set the stage for the first trade war of President Barack Obama’s administration by slapping import tariffs on $2.4 billion of U.S. goods in retaliation for a ban of its trucks from American roads.

The tariffs, on about 90 items from 40 states, were imposed by Economy Minister Gerardo Ruiz Mateos yesterday after the U.S. suspended a program to allow Mexican 18-wheelers to deliver goods across the border. U.S. Republican lawmakers said Mexico, which didn’t provide details, would impose tariffs on farm goods such as rice, beef, wheat and beans.

Long-time readers of this blog know that fear of the latin boogey-man is an animating force in Democratic Party politics, and so should not be surprised.

While George Bush spent his last days in office trying to sign a trade deal with Colombia, Obama spends his force by rolling back one with Mexico.

4 thoughts on “Obama v. NAFTA”

  1. The truck ban is wildly popular among rank-and-file Republicans in Texas. So many Republican senators voted for it that the Texas delegation felt safe voting against it. Not so sure that would have been the case if they had been deciding votes.

    As long as Mexican trucks are perceived as being unsafe, that is what politicians hide behind.

  2. sonofsamphm1c,

    I agree that protectionism is popular in this case.

    It’s Buy American, but in the form of an executive order (the other two times, he merely signed bills approved by the Congress).

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