Kaine Praises TPP Hours Before VP Pick, Clashes with Clinton on Trade

<> on July 14, 2016 in Annandale, Virginia.
Alex Wong/Getty

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) supports the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal, which presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton helped negotiate as President Obama’s secretary of state and she “actively advocated for the TPP … 45 times between 2010 and 2013.”

However, Clinton ended up flip-flopping on her support of the TPP during the primary as her rival, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), opposed the deal — as does Republican nominee Donald Trump.

Kaine pushed for Obama to receive fast-track trade authority on the agreement in 2015 and just two days ago, right before he became Clinton’s running mate, Kaine described the TPP as “an improvement of the status quo” with an “upgrade of labor standards… environmental standards… intellectual property protections.”

Kaine has expressed some concern about the TPP’s dispute resolution mechanism, which reportedly gives authority to international tribunals.

The Virginia senator also supports the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which President Bill Clinton signed into law.

Trump — who opposes both the TPP and NAFTA — took to Twitter to criticize Kaine’s position on trade.

Trump’s running mate Indiana Gov. Mike Pence previously supported the TPP as well as NAFTA, but recently changed his view during an interview with Fox News’s Sean Hannity after he was formally announced as Trump’s pick for vice president.

“I think when we elect one of the best negotiators in the world as president of the United States, I’m open to renegotiating these trade agreements,” Pence explained.


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