Voters should expect Republican frontrunner and billionaire Donald Trump to zone in on his case for how he’ll beat China in negotiations on trade deals as the 2016 GOP presidential primary continues.
But also look for him to explain it in terms of how his business dealings as a real estate mogul have intersected with—and many times clashed with—the Chinese.
“I’ve made a tremendous amount of money dealing with China,” Trump told Breitbart News in an exclusive interview earlier this week when asked how he’d handle the Chinese as president.
I own a big chunk of the Bank of America building in San Francisco. I own 1290 Avenue of the Americas, one of the largest office buildings in New York. I did that because of—and through—China and from winning from China. I’ve sold tens of millions of dollars worth of condos to Chinese. I have a great relationship with China. But I don’t want to sit back and watch our country get taken to the cleaners every single year by China. And it’s largely because of currency manipulation. I’ll do fine with China—we’ll do much better with China than we do now, and China like us much better than they do now.
Talking about China plays to Trump’s biggest strength on the campaign trail as a presidential candidate—and to everyone else’s biggest weaknesses—in that it allows him to discuss international business dealings. Along with immigration, and plans to crack down there for not just security reasons but, perhaps more importantly, economic reasons, trade policy is one of the issues Trump has ridden to the top of the polls.
Trump has been the most aggressive candidate in the field in criticizing Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) fast-track power, which establishment Republicans and Democrats passed mid-2015 to grease the skids for President Barack Obama’s globalist trade agenda.
Trump has also criticized the specific trade deal, the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), which is the one that Obama most wants to pass—and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, House Speaker Paul Ryan,and many establishment non-conservative Republicans want to give to him.
The 5,544 page TPP deal is filled with controversial provisions and is missing several protections for American workers.
“The deal is insanity,” Trump previously told Breitbart News. “That deal should not be supported and it should not be allowed to happen.”
“The deal is so bad because of the fact they don’t cover currency manipulation,” Trump added in that November 2015 statement. “It’s the number-one weapon used by foreign countries to hurt the United States and take away jobs.”
Polling on trade shows that runaway supermajorities of not just Republican voters but all Americans stand with Trump against multinational trade deals that don’t protect the American workforce.
A previous Breitbart News analysis of polling data over the past several years shows increasing opposition to such trade deals—part of the reason why, to even have a shot at passing TPP, Congress needed to put it on the greased skids fast track of TPA.