Friends of Manufacturing

Sanders, other NAFTA critics plan national 'day of action'

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USTR'S NAFTA TERMINATION TALKING POINT: More than a month before President Donald Trump made a splash in August by saying he would “end up probably terminating NAFTA at some point,” USTR staff had already formulated a “talking point” for the president’s more frequent threat of pulling out of the deal if it couldn’t be renegotiated in an acceptable way. Trump toyed with the idea of pulling out of NAFTA likely since the first days of his presidency, although his threats now seem to be aimed at furthering a negotiating strategy to press Canada and Mexico.

“Attached is support for the talking point that ‘For years, politicians have promised to renegotiate NAFTA, but none followed up,’” Payne Griffin, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer’s deputy chief of staff, wrote in a July 16 internal email obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request by watchdog group American Oversight and provided to Morning Trade.

“This is particularly good because both Clinton and Obama threatened to pull out if they did not get a good deal,” Griffin wrote.

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