By Sam Frizell
Trump once supported “leaving borders behind”
With the aid of a teleprompter,Donald Trump on Tuesdayrepeated the defiant anthem of his campaign: selfish businesses are sending American jobs overseas, and politicians have let it happen by approving bad trade policies.
“Our politicians have aggressively pursued a policy of globalization, moving our jobs, our wealth and our factories to Mexico and overseas,” Trump said in a speech in Monessen, Pennsylvania. “Ladies and gentlemen, it is time to declare our economic independence once again.”
He said the United States should rip up its current trade deals if it cannot renegotiate them and crack down on “cheaters.” It was the most aggressive portrait of American economic policy Trump has yet given, one that squared with his campaign slogan, “America First.”
But that is not a vision Trump has always had.
In a blog post written just three years ago, Trump called for global unity and international economic interdependence, writing that there were important opportunities to do business in Europe. And in a 2005 essay, Trump said that outsourcing jobs is “not always a terrible thing,” arguing for a more nuanced view of shipping jobs out of the United States.
Trump’s views in those two posts bear little resemblance to his apocalyptic view of globalization today. Though Trump has long railed against bad trade deals, his call on Tuesday for America to cut off much of its commerce with the rest of the world is at odds with his past optimism about international economic cooperation.
In the aftermath of the global financial crisis, Trump wrote in 2013 said that businesses could work in a more unified world. Trump advocated for “global unity” and abandoning borders. “We will have to leave borders behind and go for global unity when it comes to financial stability,” Trump wrote.