On Free Trade, It’s a No-brainer

This editorial in Investor’s Business Daily does an excellent job of spelling out the vast difference between John McCain and Barack Obama on free trade.

First, let’s remember that John McCain showed not only political courage, but also enormous personal character, by standing by President Bill Clinton’s side in 1994 when Clinton sought to normalize relations with Vietnam. McCain did this despite his own harrowing experiences in Vietnam, despite opposition from other veterans, and despite opposition from many others on the right and the left. He also did it a time when Bill Clinton was pretty unpopular.

Has Barack Obama ever shown such character? Has Barack Obama ever so publicly and powerfully crossed party lines? Never.

McCain, simply put, supports free trade. His voting record proves it. The support has been unwavering.

And Obama? The editorial sums up his “position” this way:

The Democratic candidate says he’s pro-free trade, but funny things happen to him whenever it’s time to vote in the Senate. Other than a pact for Oman, he has opposed every trade treaty put in front of him, telling Honduras, Guatemala, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica and Nicaragua they weren’t good enough… He even opposes past treaties such as NAFTA, which he claims benefits only “corporate interests.”

The irony here is that it flies in the face of the Obama rhetoric- Obama supporters love to say in substance that the problem with McCain is not his age but his “old ideas.” But McCain is the one who recognizes the benefits of modern free trade rules, while Obama’s suspicion of free trade is right out of the 1930’s.

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