State of South Carolina secondary Archives: on Free Trade

Thomas Dixon: Look at how trade impacts our own workforce

We must look at how trade with foreign nations impacts our own workforce and make adjustments if we find that trade is detrimental to the livelihoods of our citizens
Source: 2016 South Carolina Senate campaign website Aug 8, 2016

Donald Trump: Trade pacts are no good for us and no good for our workers

Carrier (US air conditioning company) is moving to Mexico. I would go to Carrier and say, "You're going to lay off 1,400 people. You're going to make air conditioners in Mexico, and you're trying to get them across our border with no tax." I'm going to tell them that we're going to tax you when those air conditioners come. So stay where you are or build in the United States because we are killing ourselves with trade pacts that are no good for us and no good for our workers.
Source: 2016 CBS Republican primary debate in South Carolina Feb 13, 2016

Tim Scott: Yes to trade adjustment; Yes to fast-track

Source: coverage of 2016 South Carolina Senate race Jun 24, 2015

Tim Scott: Opposes currency manipulation as trade negotiation topic

The Senate rejected an amendment sponsored by Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) to the Trade Act (HR 1314). The amendment would have defined currency manipulation as a key issue for US trade negotiators to take into account during trade talks with other countries. A supporter, Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) said Japan and other Asian countries have used currency manipulation as a primary tactic to promote exports and discourage imports, creating an unfair trade dynamic for the US that hurts domestic manufacturers.

An amendment opponent, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) called it "far too risky" because it would derail prospects for signing the Trans-Pacific Partnership with Asian countries, subject US monetary policies to the threat of sanctions from overseas, and discourage currency exchange rate transparency by countries that export goods to the U.S. The vote, on May 22, was 48 yeas to 51 nays.

NAYS: Sen. Tim Scott R-SC

YEAS: Sen. Lindsey Graham

Source: Greenville News coverage of 2016 South Carolina Senate race May 30, 2015

Nikki Haley: Trade mission to India to build S.C. ties

In November, we travelled to India on a trade mission. India, of course, is the country of my parents' birth. I hadn't been there since I was two years old, so the trip was a special one for me--there are few things more impactful than seeing firsthand, for the first time, your own history. But what was even more amazing to me was the connections I found between South Carolina and that far-off land.

I visited a workforce training center at Rayat-Bahra University in Mohali. Hundreds of students turned out for a talk I gave, and they had so many questions about South Carolina. But they didn't just know about South Carolina because we have an Indian-American governor. The skill development center at their university is modeled after ICAR in Greenville. Their school has signed an agreement with Clemson University to expand cooperation and allow their students to share in our educational opportunities, and vice-versa.

Source: State of the State address to 2015 South Carolina Assembly Jan 21, 2015

Lindsey Graham: NAFTA drained away textile trade from Upstate SC

In May 2004, in anticipation of growing the business with a large customer I signed a 3-year warehouse lease. Unfortunately, the textile trade which was huge in the Upstate was draining away as a result of NAFTA and other government policies.

When that customer bailed at the last minute, I was stuck with a $15,000-per-month lease in a market flooded with the empty warehouses of once thriving textile businesses. I had made a decision based on the expectation of growing with that customer, but I had been wrong.

By 2006, I continued to see a steady drop as more of my customers were being driven out of business. This left us with over $300,000 of unrecoverable accounts receivable. Although not yet readily apparent to the general public, the American economy was slipping into severe recession. But, of course, the Federal government is always there to help, right?

Source: Lee Bright OpEd on 2014 South Carolina Senate race Jan 1, 2014

Rick Wade: Advocated for Asian-Pacific and African cooperation

As former Senior Advisor and Deputy Chief of Staff to United States Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke, Wade had a hand in all major policy, personnel and program matters at the Commerce Department. He also worked closely with stakeholders including the White House, other federal agencies, members of Congress, state and local elected officials, businesses, trade associations as well as non-governmental organizations. Wade was a forceful advocate for the department's priorities at many domestic and international forums, including the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade, Asian-Pacific Economic Cooperation, African Growth and Opportunity Act Forum, Conference on the Caribbean and Central America, and the Department of State Policy Coordinating Committee on Brazil. He was also the Special Envoy to the Caribbean; oversaw private sector initiatives in Haiti; and led trade missions to various parts of the world.
Source: Biography by the Univ. of South Carolina alumni association Dec 13, 2013

Rick Wade: Envoy to China, to get investment via EB-5 visas

His Commerce Department job allowed Wade to hone a skill that might explain his value to GreenTech Automotive: he became a US envoy on Chinese and Asian trade.

GreenTech's majority owners have ties to China and the company seeks to raise capital from that country. It is mired in controversy over its use of a program here called EB-5, which allows foreign nationals to obtain US visas in exchange for their investment in targeted US companies. Each investment must produce at least 10 jobs.

Source: Human Events magazine on 2014 South Carolina Senate race Apr 24, 2013

Ron Paul: China trade benefits American consumers

Q: Apple Computer employs 46,000 Americans, but also employs about 500,000 people in China. How do you revive "Made in America"?

PAUL: You have to create the right conditions to bring these companies back, and they have to bring their capital back and shouldn't be taxed. Apple's a great company, but the way you ask the question, it infers that because there's a bunch of workers overseas, it hasn't benefited a lot of people here. The consumers obviously have been benefited by a good company, well run. But a lot of people worry about us buying and the money going overseas. But if you send money to China, they have to spend those dollars. Unfortunately, they're buying our debt and perpetuating our consumerism here and our debt here. But also, when you get products, let's say the computer costs $100 instead of $1000. Well, the person's just saved $900. That helps the economy. That $900 stays in that person's pocket. So we shouldn't be frightened about trade or sending money on.

Source: South Carolina 2012 GOP debate hosted by CNN's John King Jan 19, 2012

Mitt Romney: Trade with China only if they follow international rules

China has an interest in trade. China has 20 million people coming out of the farms and coming into the cities every year, they want to be able to put them to work. They want to have access to global markets. And so we have right now something they need very badly, which is access to our market and our friends around the world, we have that power over China. To make sure that we let them understand that in order for them to continue to have free and open access to the thing they want so badly, our markets, they have to play by the rules.

They can't hack into our computer systems and steal from our government. They can't steal patents and designs from corporations. And they also can't manipulate their currency in such a way as to make their prices well below what they otherwise would be.

We have to have China understand that like everybody else on the world stage, they have to play by the rules. And if they do, we'll have open trade with them and work with them.

Source: 2011 debate in South Carolina on Foreign Policy Nov 12, 2011

Mitt Romney: Go to WTO about China; we're already in a trade war

Q: How can the US make China follow the rules of international trade?

Romney: Well number one, on day one, it's acknowledging something which everyone knows, they're a currency manipulator. And on that basis, we also go before the W.T.O. [World Trade Organization] and bring an action against them as a currency manipulator. And that allows us to apply, selectively, tariffs where we believe they are stealing our intellectual property, hacking into our computers, or artificially lowering their prices and killing American jobs. We can't just sit back and let China run all over People say, "Well, you'll start a trade war." There's one going on right now, folks. They're stealing our jobs. And we're going to stand up to China.

Source: 2011 debate in South Carolina on Foreign Policy Nov 12, 2011

Richard Burr: Oppose preferential trade for China & others that bend rules

The issues surrounding international trade require someone with the knowledge, experience and credibility to make sure that North Carolina industries receive the attention they deserve. I believe that the trade "genie" is out of the bottle and cannot be ignored. I have made the case for textiles, furniture, and tobacco--but more needs to be done to protect these North Carolina industries. I will work for increased enforcement of trade agreements and help put an end to the abuses of current nations that are exploiting weaknesses in the U.S. Customs system. I voted against preferential trade status for China 8 times because I did not believe we could trust them and I will continue to take a tough stance against countries that try to bend the rules. Many workers have already lost jobs because of the increasingly global economy and I support Trade Adjustment Assistance, including re-training for workers.
Source: on 2010 South Carolina Senate incumbents Nov 24, 2010

Duncan Hunter: China is cheating on trade by devaluing their currency

Q: You have said that you would deal with the enormous trade deficit America has with China. How?

A: China is cheating on trade. They devalue their currency by 40%. That undercuts the American markets, wipes American products off the shelf not only here but around the world. Weíve lost 1.8 million jobs in the US, high-paying manufacturing jobs, to China. I would enforce the law with China, the trade rules with China.

Source: 2007 Republican Debate in South Carolina May 15, 2007

Alan Keyes: Banks and American clout should help farmers

Q: What will you do as president to help farmers get sufficient pay for their work? A: We have to give our farmers access to the kind of capital that they need. We need to get out of this collective business of bargaining and sit down and make these countries understand. If they want access to our markets, theyíre going to have to give us an exchange, something thatís of equal value. And the collectivist approach weíve been taking hasnít produced that result.
Source: Republican debate in West Columbia, South Carolina Jan 7, 2000

Gary Bauer: Revoke Chinaís MFN & help US farmers

Q: What will you do as president to help farmers get sufficient pay for their work? A: Free trade is fine, but we donít have free trade. For 10 years in a row, we have given China Most-Favored Nation status and in exchange they have stuck their finger in our eye. They buy less of our farm products now than they did in the past. Governor Bush and many others up here would give China MFN status again. I will not. I will withdraw it the first week in office.
Source: Republican debate in West Columbia, South Carolina Jan 7, 2000

George W. Bush: Sow free trade and farmers will reap

Q: What will you do as president to help farmers get sufficient pay for their work?
A: I would be a free trading president, a president that will work tirelessly to open up markets for agricultural products all over the world. I believe our American farmers. can compete so long as the playing field is level. Thatís why I am such a strong advocate of free trade and thatís why I reject protectionism and isolation because I think it hurts our American farmers.
Source: Republican debate in West Columbia, South Carolina Jan 7, 2000

John McCain: Substitute trade treaties for protectionism

Q: What will you do as president to help farmers get sufficient pay for their work? A: The American farmer is the most productive and efficient farmer in the world. He or she can compete anywhere in the world as long as we open the markets to those products. Isolationism and protectionism doesnít work. We should not subsidize ethanol or sugar or any other crop, because then that hurts the American consumer. But I will lower the barriers to products coming into the US in return for any nation that will lower their barriers to US products, particularly our magnificent and wonderful agricultural products.
Source: Republican debate in West Columbia, South Carolina Jan 7, 2000

  • The above quotations are from State of South Carolina Politicians: secondary Archives.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Free Trade.
  • Click here for other issues (main summary page).
2020 Presidential contenders on Free Trade:
  Democrats running for President:
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)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
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 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.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)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
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)
Please consider a donation to!
Click for details -- or send donations to:
1770 Mass Ave. #630, Cambridge MA 02140
(We rely on your support!)

Page last updated: Oct 12, 2021