Hoffa “Disappointed” by lack of specifics in NAFTA 2.0 Proposals

James Hoffa

Teamsters President James Hoffa is “disappointed” the OBJECTIVES FOR THE NAFTA RENEGOTIATION did not include a specific point of something near and dear to his heart, the banishment of Mexican trucks and drivers from American highways.

In a statement released Tuesday, Hoffa said:

“I am disappointed that the latest version of the administration’s goals for a NAFTA replacement is not more specific. The very general outline that the USTR posted on its website suggests that the Trump trade reform team is still undecided about what new trade policy model will replace the old NAFTA and its expansion in other bad deals like the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

“While I agree with the President that NAFTA has been a disaster for American manufacturing and workers, I don’t see anything in these USTR guidelines for renegotiation that point towards the dramatic overhaul that NAFTA needs. For example, while we agree with the administration that a modernized NAFTA must include new chapters that protect labor rights and prohibit currency manipulation, we are concerned, based on these new negotiating objectives, that the USTR won’t take strong and specific language to the table when the talks start a month from now.

“This outline raises more questions than it answers about U.S. priorities going into NAFTA renegotiation. The priorities for the Teamsters, our U.S. and Canadian members alike, include removing the worst provisions, like the outdated and controversial ‘investor-state dispute settlement’ regime in the investment chapter, the government procurement provisions that undermine Buy American, and the cross-border trucking provisions that threaten highway safety. I will work with the USTR in support of this ‘fair trade’ agenda and a new NAFTA that is superior to the TPP and finally works for American manufacturers and workers.”

Hoffa had a private meeting on January 11, 2017 with then President-Elect Trump where they discussed among other issues, banning Mexican trucks from the US.

The two items I put in boldface go to the heart of the matter. Hoffa has no problem with allowing Canadian trucks, driven mostly by “New Canadians” from the middle east and many French-Canadians who speak little or no English operating cross border into the United States.

The reason? It’s nothing to do with safety nor security. Canada has allowed the Teamsters to organize in that country where they now have over 35,000 members across Canada. Mexico, on the other hand and it’s strong trucking associations, will not allow the Teamsters access to their country. And no children, there is no “Constitutional  right” given to the Teamsters or any other union to organize in a foreign country.

What Hoffa is saying when he states ” I will work with the USTR in support of this ‘fair trade’ agenda and a new NAFTA that is superior to the TPP and finally works for American manufacturers and workers”  is that he, along with allies OOIDA and the bogus safety groups aligned with him, will work to unilaterally have Mexican carriers and drivers banned from operating in the United States. Something that cannot be done without kicking the Canadians out at the same time.

This has nothing to do with the so-called “fair and level playing field” mentioned when NAFTA negotiations are brought up. Not in the least. It’s something more base and sinister.

This post is part of the thread: NAFTA 2.0 – an ongoing story on this site. View the thread timeline for more context on this post.