NAFTA and the 2008 Election

Topic: NAFTA and the 2008 Election

James Goldgeier:  Well, we saw in the Democratic primary, certainly the politics was-- drove both Obama and Clinton toward talking about the need to redo NAFTA. You know, very ironic-- especially for Hillary Clinton-- because NAFTA really was one of Bill Clinton's signature achievements as president. And, you know, you can't really renegotiate agreements like that because you really then signal-- you give too much to the other partners out there reason to think, "Well wait a minute, maybe the United States isn't really a reliable trade partner, if they're going to want to renegotiate the next time somebody comes into office." So, I don't think that's realistic and I think that Obama will find himself, as presidents do, having to try to push forward on free trade, but the politics are going to be very difficult. I mean, Bill Clinton-- we had in our book, Charlene Barshefsky who was Clinton's trade representative in the second term. You know, she said 1993 was the high point. You know, and Clinton's battle with the party, you know, just dragged on through the decade. It was very difficult for him. And the politics are even tougher today for Obama. I mean, you know, the left part of the Democratic Party feels that, really, the American worker has gotten the shaft and they're not going to want to listen to a president talking about free trade.

Recorded on: 07/08/2008


Obama may have a lot to do for the American worker, says James Goldgeier.

Related Articles

How schizophrenia is linked to common personality type

Both schizophrenics and people with a common personality type share similar brain patterns.

Mind & Brain
  • A new study shows that people with a common personality type share brain activity with patients diagnosed with schizophrenia.
  • The study gives insight into how the brain activity associated with mental illnesses relates to brain activity in healthy individuals.
  • This finding not only improves our understanding of how the brain works but may one day be applied to treatments.
Keep reading Show less

Human skeletal stem cells isolated in breakthrough discovery

It's a development that could one day lead to much better treatments for osteoporosis, joint damage, and bone fractures.

Image: Nissim Benvenisty
Surprising Science
  • Scientists have isolated skeletal stem cells in adult and fetal bones for the first time.
  • These cells could one day help treat damaged bone and cartilage.
  • The team was able to grow skeletal stem cells from cells found within liposuctioned fat.
Keep reading Show less

How exercise helps your gut bacteria

Gut bacteria play an important role in how you feel and think and how well your body fights off disease. New research shows that exercise can give your gut bacteria a boost.

National Institutes of Health
Surprising Science
  • Two studies from the University of Illinois show that gut bacteria can be changed by exercise alone.
  • Our understanding of how gut bacteria impacts our overall health is an emerging field, and this research sheds light on the many different ways exercise affects your body.
  • Exercising to improve your gut bacteria will prevent diseases and encourage brain health.
Keep reading Show less