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Clinton Was "Against" NAFTA?

- March 14, 2016

Today, Top Clinton Advisor Paul Begala Said That Clinton Was "Privately" "Against" NAFTA While First Lady. "CNN's JAKE TAPPER: "Well the jobs are still gone." CLINTON ADVISOR PAUL BEGALA: "Well, that's the thing, there's a lot of anger on left that I think a lot of elites in my party did not see, and I have to say I was there, I was in the room. Hillary was against NAFTA." TAPPER: "She was against NAFTA?" BEGALA: "Yes, she was privately. I was there. She counseled against supporting NAFTA. Now, it was her husband's administration, he made the decisions, she supported it and went along with it as everybody did. But, she's he's always been more of a trade skeptic, frankly than her husband, but you've got to take the good with the bad, I guess." TAPPER: "You know, the person who ran NAFTA through, from the White House, through Congress, a young staffer named Rahm Emanuel." (CNN's The Lead, 3/14/16)

Click To Watch

As First Lady, Clinton Strongly Promoted NAFTA, And Viewed It As An Example Of The Economy That Is "Reaping The Benefits, Not The Burdens Of Globalization"

In 1998, Clinton Praised The Passage Of NAFTA, Pledging To Continue Free Trade Advocacy: "It Is Certainly Clear That We Have Not By Any Means Finished The Job That Has Begun." "At the 1998 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, she praised corporations for mounting 'a very effective business effort in the U.S. on behalf of NAFTA.' She added: 'It is certainly clear that we have not by any means finished the job that has begun.'" (Kristin Jensen and Mark Drajem, "Clinton Breaks With Husband's Legacy On Nafta Pact, China Trade," Bloomberg , 3/30/07)

During A 1996 Campaign Stop In Texas, Hillary Clinton Touted NAFTA "Saying It Would Reap Widespread Benefits In The Region." "Meanwhile, first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton stumped in the heavily Democratic lower Rio Grande valley. In Brownsville, she touted the president's support for the North American Free Trade Agreement, saying it would reap widespread benefits in the region." ("Clinton Campaigns In Texas," United Press International, 11/1/96)

Was Bill Clinton Referring To His Wife When He Called Critics Of NAFTA Fearful And Insecure?

Bill Clinton Labeled Critics Of NAFTA As Fearful And Insecure. BILL CLINTON: "But if you strip away the differences, it is clear that most of the people that oppose this pact are rooted in the fears and insecurities that are legitimately gripping the great American middle class. It is no use to deny that these fears and insecurities exist. It is no use denying that many of our people have lost in the battle for change. But it is a great mistake to think that NAFTA will make it worse." (President Bill Clinton, Remarks At Signing Of NAFTA Side Agreements , Washington, DC, 9/14/93)

In Public, After She Was Elected To The Senate, Clinton STILL Touted NAFTA

In Her Book "Living History," Clinton Praised NAFTA, Calling It An Example Of The Economy "Reaping The Benefits, Not The Burdens Of Globalization." "Creating a free trade zone in North America- the largest free trade zone in the world- would expand U.S. exports, create jobs and ensure that our economy was reaping the benefits, not the burdens of globalization." (Hillary Rodham Clinton, Living History, 2003, p. 182)

Then, As Secretary Of State Clinton Praised NAFTA's Success And Promised To Continue The Trade Relationships The Agreement Produced

Clinton Said "The North American Market, Of Which Mexico Is Such A Central Part Under NAFTA, Is Going To Remain Strong," Adding "We're Going To Continue To Import And Export To And From Mexico." CLINTON: "But I want to start from the point that here we are in the midst of a global economic crisis, and we need all the growth we can get because that will eventually help every country be able to overcome this recession, since we are so interdependent. I think it's also important to say that I think that the North American market, of which Mexico is such a central part under NAFTA, is going to remain strong. The fact that goods can be manufactured and assembled in Mexico, cutting down on transportation costs, cutting down on the carbon footprint, which will become an even more important consideration in the years ahead, means that we're going to continue to import and export to and from Mexico." (Secretary Hillary Clinton, Remarks At The First Diplomacy Briefing Series Meeting, Washington, DC, 12/11/09)


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