Is President Trump Preparing to Exit NAFTA?

Well, according to a Times report on Wednesday citing the ubiquitous and very anonymous “senior administration official”, the answer to the question in the article’s title is a definite yes. The NYT source claims that President Donald Trump is working on a brand-new executive order which is aimed at a NAFTA Amerexit, i.e. to pull the United States from the the North American Free Trade Agreement.

This scenario is by no means far fetched, as candidate Donald Trump has said on multiple occasions during his campaign that NAFTA was  one of the worst deals America ever made, pledging to re-negotiate its terms or to exit from the free trade agreement altogether.

The historic trade agreement between the United States, Canada and Mexico was signed back in 1994 during Bill Clinton’s first term into office. NAFTA was heavily criticized by the presidential hopeful Ross Perot back in the day, who prophetically said about the respective free trade deal that it will ruin America’s middle class, it will create a huge trade deficit (which it did) and it will lead to a catastrophic loss of US jobs, as in, let me quote from memory:, a giant job-sucking sound at the Southern border, which again, NAFTA achieved with flying colors.

In President Trump’s own words:

NAFTA’s been very, very bad for our country . . . It’s been very, very bad for our companies and for our workers, and we’re going to make some very big changes or we are going to get rid of NAFTA once and for all.

It is possible that President Trump’s threats to withdraw the US from NAFTA are nothing but a negotiation tactic, aimed at getting better terms out of Mexico and Canada. Considering the huge job loss and the immense trade deficit NAFTA has created for the last 2 decades, a clever renegotiation would be a big deal for working class Americans.

Photo Joe Marquette/AP