In a statement one Forbes writer calls “ludicrous,” Donald Trump said on Sunday that if he is elected he would consider pulling the United States from the World Trade Organization. While talking to Meet The Press, Trump mentioned that he was going to hit companies that move manufacturing jobs abroad with a 30 percent punitive import tax. When host Chuck Todd pointed out that the World Trade Organization (WTO) would object to this measure, Trump replied with the following.
“Doesn’t matter. We’ll renegotiate or pull out. These trade deals are a disaster, Chuck. World Trade Organization is a disaster.”
When Todd asked whether the Presidential nominee was concerned that such a move would have a dramatic impact on the world economy, much like the Brexit vote had, Trump was unconcerned noting that the market is higher now than it was before the vote.
This comes after Donald Trump already said that he would either renegotiate or rip up the North American Free Trade Agreement, leading many to question whether Trump has any idea what he’s talking about. As a USA Today article points out, if Trump succeeded in adding a penalty or “tariff” to products coming in from Mexico, and Mexico retaliated by adding a tariff to products going into Mexico, this would result in a trade war. Economists that advised both Republican and Democratic presidents all agreed that Trump’s plans are irresponsible, and also agreed that the repercussions would be widespread.
Several economists agree that Trump’s trade policies are deeply flawed. https://t.co/HD1NC2zP0A
— USA TODAY (@USATODAY) July 25, 2016
Of course, Trump’s views on trade haven’t always been this way. According to the Washington Examiner, dozens of Trump products have been made overseas, including both Donald Trump’s and his daughter’s, Ivanka’s, products. The article says that Trump-brand products have been outsourced to numerous countries since 2006, including China, Japan, Honduras, Brazil, Norway, Italy, and Germany.
The presidential hopeful has been making a lot of comments that are concerning U.S. allies around the world. Last week in an interview with the New York Times Trump said that he wouldn’t necessarily defend an allied country if they were invaded by another country. He included Baltic states that are on Russia’s border in that statement and given the situation in the Ukraine, it is not out of the realm of possibility that Russia could choose to invade those countries.
“I will not interfere in the U.S. election campaign, but what I can do is say what matters for NATO. Solidarity among allies is a key value for NATO.”
Politicians in both the Republican and Democratic parties called Trump out for his comments, with President Obama affirming that the United States remains committed to its allies. Senator Lindsey Graham commented that Trump’s comments would make Vladimir Putin very happy, and Senator Ben Sasse said that “Americans keep our word.” At the Republican National Convention last week, many attendees clarified that they did not agree with Donald Trump’s comments, but they still planned to vote for him.
It appears that the Republican nominee can pretty much say whatever he wants and his party will still support him. A poll released today showed that Donald Trump would win the election if it was held today, so the public is as forgiving of his comments as the party is. There are still four months left until the American public votes, and anything can happen in that time, but the experts say that even if Trump does win he would have a hard time pulling out of NATO or the WTO. If they are right though, the fallout from him trying could be devastating.
[Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images]