Bernie Sanders: You Can't Have A Trade Policy Based On Threats And Tweets


Sen. Bernie Sanders talked about his positions on trade policy, in an interview Sunday with CNN's Dana Bash:

DANA BASH, CNN: OK, so let's talk a little bit about some of the issues before us and Donald Trump in particular. He, of course, is touting a deal on Friday to avoid imposing tariffs on Mexico after he says Mexico agreed to increase its national guard presence, dismantle organizations that traffic migrants and return asylum seekers to Mexico more easily. Does the president deserve credit for that?

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS: Well I think what the president has done is tout what, in fact, in many respects Mexico has agreed to do many months ago. But I think what the world is tired of and what I am tired of is a president who consistently goes to war, verbal war with our allies, whether it is Mexico, whether it is Canada. The issue here in terms of immigration requires us finally to do what should have been done years ago, and that is pass comprehensive immigration reform to make sure that our young -- young people in this country who are in the DACA program get immediate legal protection and we have humane border policy. We need a decent relationship with Mexico. They are our allies, as is the case with Canada. We should not be confronting them every other day.

BASH: Philosophically, though, as president, would you be willing to use tariffs as a negotiating tactic on non-trade related issues?

SANDERS: I believe that the trade policies this country, the United States has had for many years, were written by the CEOs of large corporations, often in secret by the way. I voted against NAFTA, I voted against permanent normal trade relations with China and I think what the facts show is that we have lost some 4 million good paying jobs as a result of those disastrous trade agreements.

BASH: And I -- and I understand that's how you feel about trade, but what about the -- the idea of tactically using tariffs on other issues -- to -- to negotiate on other issues?

SANDERS: You can't use it to threaten. You can't have a trade policy based on tweets. What you need is a comprehensive trade policies which represents the working people of this country and not just the CEOs of large corporations. So do we need to change our trade policies so that we protect jobs in America? Yes. Do we need to work with other countries to lift up the poorest people around the world? Yes, we do. But Trump's erratic threats and trade policies are not the way to go.

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