Beto O`Rourke on Free Trade

Democratic candidate for President; Texas Senator nominee


Need allies in war, including trade wars

Q: (to Rep. Tim Ryan): Would you continue President Trump's steel tariffs, yes or no?

RYAN: I would have to re-evaluate. I think some of them are effective. But he's bungled the whole thing, obviously. Here's the problem with President Trump. He has a tactical move. What's the grand strategy for the United States? China has 100-year plan, a 50-year plan, a 20-year plan. We live in a 24-hour news cycle. That spells disaster for our economy and disaster for our global politics.

O'ROURKE: You know, the question was about tariffs. And they're a huge mistake. They constitute the largest tax increase on the American consumer, hitting the middle class and the working poor especially hard, and farmers in Iowa and across the country are bearing the brunt of the consequences. When have we ever gone to war, including a trade war, without allies and friends and partners? As president, we will hold China accountable, but we will bring our allies and friends, like the European Union, to bear.

Source: July Democratic Primary debate (first night in Detroit) , Jul 30, 2019

Demand changes to post-NAFTA agreement USMCA

O`Rourke on NAFTA/USMCA: Demand changes to USMCA.

15 CANDIDATES HAVE SIMILAR VIEWS: Joe Biden; Cory Booker; Pete Buttigieg; Julian Castro; Bill de Blasio; Kirsten Gillibrand; Kamala Harris; John Hickenlooper; Jay Inslee; Amy Klobuchar; Tim Ryan; Bernard Sanders; Eric Swalwell; Elizabeth Warren; Marianne Williamson.

The majority of Democratic candidates want changes made to the agreement before it comes up for a vote in Congress, focusing on labor & environmental standards.

Source: Politico "2020Dems on the Issues" , Jul 17, 2019

Don't use tariffs to pressure countries

O`Rourke on Tariffs: Don't use tariffs to pressure countries.

FIVE CANDIDATES HAVE SIMILAR VIEWS: Joe Biden; Steve Bullock; Peter Buttigieg; Kirsten Gillibrand; Kamala Harris.

The majority of Democrats have broadly slammed Trump's use of tariffs. Harris and Gillibrand say tariffs on China and U.S. allies hurt American consumers, workers and companies. Joe Biden and other candidates have argued that farmers and manufacturers are feeling the brunt of Trump's trade wars.

Source: Politico "2020Dems on the Issues" , Jul 17, 2019

Support NAFTA and TPP

Hailing from a border area that relies on trade with Mexico, O'Rourke supports the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, and has indicated he would not significantly renegotiate it. He also supported other large trade deals including, in 2015, the initial attempts by Congress to move forward with the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
Source: PBS News hour on 2020 Presidential hopefuls , Mar 14, 2019

Traveled to Asia with Obama to push TPP

O'Rourke voted to let President Obama negotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership, or T.P.P., which Bernie Sanders attacked as damaging to the working class. O'Rourke now says he would have voted "no" on the ultimate agreement. But in 2015, he traveled with Obama on a trip to Asia to help build support for the deal.

In Vietnam, O'Rourke witnessed hundreds of thousands of people lining the streets of Ho Chi Minh City for Obama's motorcade, the biggest crowds that had ever greeted the then president.

Source: Joe Hagan in Vanity Fair on 2020 Democratic primary , Mar 13, 2019

Tariffs on China will devastate our economy

Q: Support Trump's imposition of tariffs on steel & other products?

Ted Cruz (R): No. Also opposed federal aid given to TX farmers hurt by trade retaliation.

Beto O'Rourke (D): No. They "will devastate our state, businesses, & economy."

Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Texas Senate race , Oct 9, 2018

Make our international ports modern, efficient and safe

Source: 2012 House campaign website, betoforcongress.com, "Issues" , Nov 6, 2012

$70B in legal trade passes through El Paso to Mexico

The El Paso/Juarez trade corridor is essential to the North American economy. More than $70 billion in legal trade passed through regional ports of entry last year, almost 20 percent of all U.S./Mexico legal trade. El Paso/Juarez is the second largest trade corridor after Laredo on the U.S./Mexico border.

Like its legal counterpart, the Juarez corridor is a prized staging area for the North American black market.

From slaves bound for the underground U.S. sex trade to migrant farmworkers and maids headed for U.S. fields and subdivisions, Juarez is a logical point of entry for all manner of illicit commerce.

Source: Dealing Death and Drugs, by Beto O'Rourke, p. 25 , Nov 29, 2011

$25B more loans from Export-Import Bank.

O`Rourke co-sponsored H.R.1031 & S.824

This bill raises the cap on outstanding loans, guarantees, and insurance of the Export-Import Bank of the United States for FY2015-FY2022 and afterwards. The Bank shall:

Opponents reasons for voting NAY: (Washington Examiner, 12/2/12): The Export-Import Bank is a taxpayer-backed agency that finances U.S. exports, primarily though loan guarantees. You'd think the bank would spread the money around to nurture up-and-coming businesses. You'd be wrong, very wrong. In fact, 83% of its taxpayer-backed loan guarantees in 2012 went to just one exporter: Boeing. Welcome to the "New Economic Patriotism," where the big get bigger and taxpayers bear the risk. Ex-Im is at the heart of Obama's National Export Initiative and is a pillar of the economic patriotism that Obama pledged in a second term. When government hands out more money, the guys with the best lobbyists and the closest ties to power will disproportionately get their hands on that money. Obama has spent four years pushing more subsidies, more bailouts and more regulations. "New Economic Patriotism" basically amounts to a national industrial policy -- Washington championing certain major domestic companies and industries, as if the global economy were an Olympic competition.

Source: Promoting U.S. Jobs Through Exports Act 15-HR1031 on Feb 24, 2015

Other candidates on Free Trade: Beto O`Rourke on other issues:
2020 Presidential Democratic Primary Candidates:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 GOP and Independent Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (Libertarian-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Howie Hawkins (Green-NY)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich (R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence (R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
CEO Howard Schultz (I-WA)
Pres.Donald Trump (R-NY)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
V.C.Arvin Vohra (Libertarian-MD)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld (L-NY,R-MA)
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External Links about Beto O`Rourke:

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
State Rep.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)

Page last updated: Dec 15, 2019