Now that the primaries are over, Sen. Barack Obama has come out in favor of NAFTA. He told Fortune in an interview that “Sometimes during campaigns the rhetoric gets overheated and amplified.”
I’ll say. On the campaign trail he has called NAFTA both “devastating” and “a big mistake.” He also threatened to unilaterally opt out of NAFTA for six months as a prelude to reopening negotiations.
The U.S. economy has added 26 million net jobs since NAFTA took effect in 1994. Inflation-adjusted worker compensation is up 23%.
Obama’s qualified support of free trade is a welcome change. But it makes clear an unfortunate reality. His earlier rhetoric was either misinformed, or intentionally deceitful.
Neither is an appealing characteristic for a potential President.