What is NAFTA? Trump calls out the Clinton-era agreement during the debate
The 2016 presidential debate is officially in effect, and we’re already tempted to down a stiff drink (or three). Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump wasted no time getting into the thick of things with a tense exchange about the validity of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) then-President Bill Clinton signed into law, which the Republican nominee brought into play after Clinton complimented her husband’s run in the Oval Office with the statement, “I think my husband did a pretty good job in the 1990s.” But many people were left wondering, what is NAFTA?
Um, we’re not exactly sure what the former president’s decisions have to do with Clinton’s stance on the issues; however, it’s worth going back for a quick review of precisely what NAFTA entails. The agreement eliminated all taxes and tariffs between North America, Mexico, and Canada, producing the largest trade-free zone in the world. It went into effect Jan. 1, 1994 and although it strengthened ties between the U.S. and Mexico, its opponents (which include Trump because, duh) criticize it as a major force behind businesses capitalizing on sending American jobs to countries where they’re able to pay lower wages.
FYI, in 2015, Trump said he would replace the free trade agreement with fair trade.
Who knows exactly how Trump plans to improve upon (or completely destroy) the current NAFTA agreement, but it’s clear that his trade stance has alienated many working-class voters, something that isn’t the least bit surprising.