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The Libertarian vice presidential candidate, William F. Weld, said Tuesday that he plans to focus exclusively on blasting Donald Trump over the next five weeks, a strategic pivot aimed at denying Trump the White House and giving himself a key role in helping to rebuild the GOP.
Weld, a former Republican governor of Massachusetts, said he is focusing on Trump because, while he disagrees with Hillary Clinton on fiscal and military issues, Trump’s agenda is so objectionable it’s “in a class by itself.”
“I think Mr. Trump’s proposals in the foreign policy area, including nuclear proliferation, tariffs, and free trade, would be so hurtful, domestically and in the world, that he has my full attention,” Weld said.
Weld, meanwhile, has denounced Trump as a “huckster” with a “screw loose” and has said his plan to deport 11 million illegal immigrants “would remind me of Anne Frank hiding in the attic.”
Weld’s new plan calls for him to focus his fire on Trump in a handful of red states — as well as in at least one swing state, New Hampshire — where the Libertarians are running strong. Nationally, the ticket is drawing about 7 percent support.
Weld insisted he and Johnson remain “happy warriors” and said Johnson is fully supportive of his anti-Trump campaign. “I have had in mind all along trying to get the Donald into third place, and with some tugging and hauling, we might get there,” Weld said.
The unions are out to kill a U.S. trade deal with Asia, and they are now joined in an odd-bedfellows alliance with the Pat Buchanan protectionist wing on the right. For this reason the coming vote in Congress on trade promotion authority represents an economic gut-check moment for the GOP. Passage of this law would allow the completion of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a free-trade agreement that would cover most of our Asian trading partners (excluding China). The U.S.-Asia trade zone would rival the European Union in size. It would be good for both sides of the Pacific.
TPA has been the major vehicle by which major free trade agreements over the last 30 years, including the seminal North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and others with Asian nations, have been approved.
These trade bills have lowered tariffs here in the U.S., thus benefiting American consumers (Wal-Mart's everyday low prices could hardly exist without trade) while expanding export markets for American producers.
Republicans can be excused for wondering why they have to do all the political heavy lifting to put more power into this president's hands when Obama won't lobby for votes from his own party the way Bill Clinton did so effectively in the '90s to get NAFTA and other deals done. The modern Democratic Party, alas, is no longer the party of free-traders like FDR, JFK and Clinton. That's sad.