President Obama touted the benefits of globalism in a joint press conference Wednesday with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto. Obama defended the integration of the global economy and said focusing solely on your local market is the "wrong medicine."
"The prescription of withdrawing from trade deals and focusing solely on your local market, that's the wrong medicine," Obama said at the trilateral event.
"It's not feasible because our auto plants, for example, would shut down if we didn't have access to some parts in other parts of the world. So we'd lose jobs. And the amount of disruption involved would be enormous."
The president said automation not trade is the reason the "era when everybody was working in manufacturing" ended.
"This nostalgia about an era when everybody was working in manufacturing jobs and you didn't need a college degree and you could go in and as long as you worked hard you could support a family and live a middle class life, that has been undermined far more by automation than it has been by outsourcing or the shift of jobs to low-income or low-wage countries," Obama said.