Senators Object to Trump’s Trade Nominee for Supporting “Incoherent” Policy

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Ben Sasse (R-NE) say they will vote against Trump's trade representative nominee, Robert Lighthizer, because he seemingly supports the Trump regime's "incoherent" position on trade policy.

“We fear that you do not have an appreciation for the millions of jobs created by this free trade deal, and that you would not champion agriculture during your time as USTR,” wrote McCain and Sasse. [...]

“Beyond your vocal advocacy for protectionist shifts in our trade policies, the Administration’s ongoing, incoherent, and inconsistent trade message has compounded our concern,” wrote McCain and Sasse.

McCain and Sasse are rightfully concerned about what Trump's incoherence could do to their states. Every senator should be concerned, but Lighthizer's nomination has cleared a procedural hurdle and it's possible he could be confirmed later today unless more Republicans come out against him.

I don't like to be pessimistic, but I don't see how we make it through four years of Trump without another recession.

  • mnpollio

    And I have about as much hope of McCain and Sasse sticking to their guns against Trump/Pence/Ryan as I have of the Palin Family demonstrating an ounce of common sense.

    So far I have not seen anything but empty posturing words from the “thoughtful old school” Republicans before they cave and go along with the Republican majority in abetting Das Trump. These are the people that should be leading the charge demanding extensive investigations into Trump’s actions with the Russians and obstructing everything until he cooperates with those investigations. I mean they obstructed untold numbers of Obama judicial picks until someone with an (R) behind their name could claim the White House (and does anyone believe for one moment that they would not have obstructed Hillary Clinton’s nominees until their endless stream of Benghazi and e-mail investigations and threatened impeachment hearings continued into eternity?), so why are we not seeing the same behavior by these self-proclaimed uber-patriots in the light of increasingly credible allegations of treason from on high?

  • Badgerite

    If we are lucky, it will just be a recession.

    • ninjaf

      ^^^ This.

  • muselet

    I don’t know much about Robert Lighthizer—”All I know is just what I read in the papers, and that’s an alibi for my ignorance.” –Will Rogers—except that he seems to be a bog-standard trade hawk and, as such, is the best anyone could possibly expect from this administration.

    We’ll probably do okay, as long as our trading partners realize they’re dealing with a lunatic and his minions, and negotiate accordingly.


    • Christopher Foxx

      as long as our trading partners realize they’re dealing with a lunatic and his minions, and negotiate accordingly,

      What does “accordingly” mean in this context? That they take it easy on us because we’re represented by idiots (as one might when, say, playing checkers against someone who is developmentally delayed)? Or that they’ll take full advantage of having someone on the other side of the table who has no idea what their own best interests are?

      I cannot imagine the former happening. If the US can’t look out for it’s own interests it certainly shouldn’t count on others to do so for us. Were the situation reversed, we’d be taking, say, England for everything we could get.

      • muselet

        I’d make a joke and say “don’t make any sudden moves,” but that’s not constructive.

        What I meant was, anyone negotiating with the Trump administration should know not to fall for the overheated rhetoric; it’s all bluff and bluster. With some patience (and bitten tongues), it should be possible to come to a halfway-reasonable agreement.

        Will some countries try to take advantage of the US? Of course, but they’ll have to keep the crowing to a minimum.


        • Christopher Foxx

          I suspect the US is in for getting the short end of the stick on a lot of agreements. We’ll be lucky if they’re “halfway-reasonable”.