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Tom Tancredo on Free Trade

Republican Representative (CO-6)


Oil trade imbalance is a national security risk

Q: Does our country’s financial situation creates a security risk?

A: The reason why it becomes a national security problem is because the bulk of our imbalance of trade is a result of our importation of oil from countries that are not our friends. That’s really where it rests. The rest of the stuff we bring in doesn’t constitute that kind of threat to the US. But when we supply funds for the people in other countries that have a malicious intent in regard to the US, it’s a national security issue.

Source: 2007 Des Moines Register Republican debate , Dec 12, 2007

NAFTA has been a disaster for many places, especially Mexico

NAFTA has been a disaster for a lot of places and especially Mexico. It destroyed the entire agricultural economy. They all came north. If NAFTA had worked so well, why would we still have so much pressure on our southern border from people trying to escape from a country that does not provide them with the economic opportunities that NAFTA promised? What is also ingrained in this whole discussion is the lack of sovereignty, the fact that our borders are now meaningless.
Source: 2007 Des Moines Register Republican Debate , Dec 12, 2007

Voted NO on permanent normalized trade relations with China

Q: What are you going to do to make sure toys that contain lead don’t make their way into our homes?

A: It is illegal to import that kind of thing. The problem is, no one really pays a lot of attention to a lot of our laws, with regard to immigration of both people and, now in this case; items, goods and services. I voted against permanent normalized trade relations with China.

Source: 2007 GOP YouTube debate in St. Petersburg, Florida , Nov 28, 2007

Enforce trade & currency rules against China

There is one place where the federal government has a role in manufacturing, and that’s ensuring that everybody’s playing by the rules. Now, when Communist China devalues their currency by 40%, they undercut American products around the world. They undercut them so low that we can’t even pay for the cost of materials and meet their prices. Now, that has put 1.8 million working Americans out of work, and that job, the job of enforcing those rules, is the president’s job. That’s what I intend to do.
Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan , Oct 9, 2007

CAFTA should be about trade; get rid of immigration parts

CAFTA was a bill over a thousand pages long to do what, to reduce tariffs between the six Central American countries and the United States? That was about a paragraph, right? But it’s over a thousand pages. We’ve included all kinds of things in there that had nothing to do with trade.

In particular, of course, I’m talking about the immigration-related issues. I offered an amendment on the floor of the House during the debate on CAFTA, the Central America Free Trade Agreement, to say that there will be no immigration issues contained inside of a trade package. It was defeated.

We are talking about trade issues that actually begin to impact our national sovereignty. There’s the problem. We are reducing the importance of borders and increasing the threat to national sovereignty with the kind of trade programs that we put through up to this point in time.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan , Oct 9, 2007

Don’t diminish sovereignty in hopes of influencing trade

Q: Will you abolish all plans to promote economic integration of the North American Union?

A: Recently, Felipe Calderon, the President of Mexico, stated that Mexico does not end at its borders. He said that where there is a Mexican, there is now Mexico. To hear a president of another country suggest that the borders between you do not exist, and to not have our president turn to them and say, “Are you nuts?”--there is something called a border, and it must be defended. We are not simply just residents of the North American continent. That is exactly where this thing is going, a sort of an economic union where everybody believes trade is such a good thing--and I certainly think trade can be good--but why do you have to go ahead and diminish your national sovereignty in the hopes of influencing trade? Never will that happen in my administration.

Source: 2007 GOP Values Voter Presidential Debate , Sep 17, 2007

No NAFTA Superhighway from Canada to Mexico

Q: As president, do you support the NAFTA “Superhighway” presently under construction from Mexico to Canada, portions of which shall be under foreign control?
Source: [Xref Hunter] 2007 GOP Values Voter Presidential Debate , Sep 17, 2007

Fast track authority should not be renewed

The President’s fast track authority should not be renewed. The constitution gives Congress--not the Executive--the power to “regulate commerce with foreign nations.” Presidents have abused the power. Instead of sticking to trade agreements, they make commitments on matters of domestic policy, like immigration and carbon dioxide emissions, in the guise of international accords.
Source: 2008 House campaign website, www.teamtancredo.com, “Issues” , Sep 1, 2007

Globalization is replacing “citizens” with “consumers”

During a 2006 debate, Gary Hart said: “globalization is eroding national sovereignty.” Globalization, he said, had replaced citizen with consumer in the minds of many people. The US isn’t so much a country any more as it is a market.

The same thing is happening throughout the West. Since the Maastricht Treaty finalizing the European Union was adopted, Europeans have become citizens of a union rather than remain sovereign Dutch, German, etc. citizens. For many Europeans, their nation has simply become a place they reside, no longer a part of their identity.

Multicultural elites now frequently describe themselves as “citizens of the world.” If given the chance, they would replace loyalty to any one country to humanity, to Mother Earth, and in some cases, loyalty to them. This rhetoric has trickled down to impressionable youth. Too frequently they tell me that America is a continent, not a nation. Multiculturalism had advanced so much that it denigrates the value of a national birthright.

Source: In Mortal Danger, by Tom Tancredo, p.191-192 , Jun 6, 2006

Voted YES on promoting free trade with Peru.

Approves the Agreement entered into with the government of Peru. Provides for the Agreement's entry into force upon certain conditions being met on or after January 1, 2008. Prescribes requirements for:

Proponents support voting YES because:

Rep. RANGEL: It's absolutely ridiculous to believe that we can create jobs without trade. I had the opportunity to travel to Peru recently. I saw firsthand how important this agreement is to Peru and how this agreement will strengthen an important ally of ours in that region. Peru is resisting the efforts of Venezuela's authoritarian President Hugo Chavez to wage a war of words and ideas in Latin America against the US. Congress should acknowledge the support of the people of Peru and pass this legislation by a strong margin.

Opponents recommend voting NO because:

Rep. WU: I regret that I cannot vote for this bill tonight because it does not put human rights on an equal footing with environmental and labor protections.

Rep. KILDEE: All trade agreements suffer from the same fundamental flaw: They are not self-enforcing. Trade agreements depend upon vigorous enforcement, which requires official complaints be made when violations occur. I have no faith in President Bush to show any enthusiasm to enforce this agreement. Congress should not hand this administration yet another trade agreement because past agreements have been more efficient at exporting jobs than goods and services. I appeal to all Members of Congress to vote NO on this. But I appeal especially to my fellow Democrats not to turn their backs on those American workers who suffer from the export of their jobs. They want a paycheck, not an unemployment check.

Reference: Peru Trade Promotion Agreement Implementation Act; Bill H.R. 3688 ; vote number 2007-1060 on Nov 8, 2007

Voted NO on assisting workers who lose jobs due to globalization.

H.R.3920: Trade and Globalization Act of 2007: Amends the Trade Act of 1974 to allow the filing for trade adjustment assistance (TAA) by adversely affected workers. Revises group eligibility requirements for TAA to cover: (1) a shift of production or services to abroad; or (2) imports of articles or services from abroad.

Proponents support voting YES because:

Rep. RANGEL: In recent years, trade policy has been a dividing force. This legislation develops a new trade policy that more adequately addresses the growing perception that trade is not working for American workers. The Trade and Globalization Assistance Act would expand training and benefits for workers while also helping to encourage investment in communities that have lost jobs to increased trade--particularly in our manufacturing sector. The bill is a comprehensive policy expanding opportunities for American workers, industries, and communities to prepare for and overcome the challenges created by expanded trade.

Opponents recommend voting NO because:

Rep. McCRERY: We should be considering trade adjustment assistance in the context of trade opportunities generally for US workers. That is to say, I think we should be considering modifications to our assistance network in the context of the pending free trade agreements that are before the Congress. Unfortunately, we are not doing that. We are considering TAA in isolation. [We should instead] restructure TAA from a predominantly income support program into a job retraining program. Other problems include that H.R. 3920 would:

Reference: Trade and Globalization Assistance Act; Bill HR3920 ; vote number 2007-1025 on Oct 31, 2007

Voted NO on implementing CAFTA, Central America Free Trade.

To implement the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement. A vote of YES would:
Reference: CAFTA Implementation Bill; Bill HR 3045 ; vote number 2005-443 on Jul 28, 2005

Voted YES on implementing US-Australia Free Trade Agreement.

United States-Australia Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act: implementing free trade with protections for the domestic textile and apparel industries.
Reference: Bill sponsored by Rep Tom DeLay [R, TX-22]; Bill H.R.4759 ; vote number 2004-375 on Jul 14, 2004

Voted NO on implementing US-Singapore free trade agreement.

Vote to pass a bill that would put into effect a trade agreement between the United States and Singapore. The trade agreement would reduce tariffs and trade barriers between the United States and Singapore. The agreement would remove tariffs on goods and duties on textiles, and open markets for services The agreement would also establish intellectual property, environmental and labor standards.
Reference: US-Singapore Free Trade Agreement; Bill HR 2739 ; vote number 2003-432 on Jul 24, 2003

Voted NO on implementing free trade agreement with Chile.

United States-Chile Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act: Vote to pass a bill that would put into effect a trade agreement between the US and Chile. The agreement would reduce tariffs and trade barriers between the US and Chile. The trade pact would decrease duties and tariffs on agricultural and textile products. It would also open markets for services. The trade pact would establish intellectual property safeguards and would call for enforcement of environmental and labor standards.
Reference: Bill sponsored by DeLay, R-TX; Bill HR 2738 ; vote number 2003-436 on Jul 24, 2003

Voted YES on withdrawing from the WTO.

Vote on withdrawing Congressional approval from the agreement establishing the World Trade Organization [WTO].
Reference: Resolution sponsored by Paul, R-TX; Bill H J Res 90 ; vote number 2000-310 on Jun 21, 2000

End economic protectionism: let dairy compacts expire .

Tancredo co-sponsored the Northeast Interstate Dairy Compact resolution:

Declares that the Northeast Interstate Dairy Compact should be allowed to expire under its own terms on September 30, 2001. Expresses the sense of the House of Representatives that Article I, section 10 of the United States Constitution should not be used to renew the interstate economic protectionism of our Nation's early history.

Source: House Resolution Sponsorship 01-HR230 on Aug 2, 2001

Rated 61% by CATO, indicating a mixed record on trade issues.

Tancredo scores 61% by CATO on senior issues

The mission of the Cato Institute Center for Trade Policy Studies is to increase public understanding of the benefits of free trade and the costs of protectionism.

The Cato Trade Center focuses not only on U.S. protectionism, but also on trade barriers around the world. Cato scholars examine how the negotiation of multilateral, regional, and bilateral trade agreements can reduce trade barriers and provide institutional support for open markets. Not all trade agreements, however, lead to genuine liberalization. In this regard, Trade Center studies scrutinize whether purportedly market-opening accords actually seek to dictate marketplace results, or increase bureaucratic interference in the economy as a condition of market access.

Studies by Cato Trade Center scholars show that the United States is most effective in encouraging open markets abroad when it leads by example. The relative openness and consequent strength of the U.S. economy already lend powerful support to the worldwide trend toward embracing open markets. Consistent adherence by the United States to free trade principles would give this trend even greater momentum. Thus, Cato scholars have found that unilateral liberalization supports rather than undermines productive trade negotiations.

Scholars at the Cato Trade Center aim at nothing less than changing the terms of the trade policy debate: away from the current mercantilist preoccupation with trade balances, and toward a recognition that open markets are their own reward.

The following ratings are based on the votes the organization considered most important; the numbers reflect the percentage of time the representative voted the organization's preferred position.

Source: CATO website 02n-CATO on Dec 31, 2002

Extend trade restrictions on Burma to promote democracy.

Tancredo co-sponsored extending trade restrictions on Burma to promote democracy

A joint resolution approving the renewal of import restrictions contained in the Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act of 2003. The original act sanctioned the ruling military junta, and recognized the National League of Democracy as the legitimate representative of the Burmese people.

Legislative Outcome: Related bills: H.J.RES.44, H.J.RES.93, S.J.RES.41; became Public Law 110-52.

Source: S.J.RES.16 07-SJR16 on Jun 14, 2007

Block NAFTA Superhighway & North American Union.

Tancredo co-sponsored blocking NAFTA Superhighway & North American Union

This resolution urges disengaging from the NAFTA Superhighway System and the North American because these proposals threaten U.S. sovereignty:

Source: Resolution against the NAFTA Superhighway (H.CON.RES.40) 2007-HCR40 on Jan 22, 2007

2012 Governor, House and Senate candidates on Free Trade: Tom Tancredo on other issues:
CO Gubernatorial:
Bob Beauprez
John Hickenlooper
Matthew Hess
CO Senatorial:
Amy Stephens
Cory Gardner
Ken Buck
Mark Udall
Michael Bennet
Owen Hill
Randy Baumgardner

Left 113th Congress, 2013-2014:
AL-1: Jo Bonner(R,resigned)
FL-13:Bill Young(R,deceased)
FL-19:Trey Radel(R,arrested)
IL-2: Jesse L. Jackson(D,convicted)
LA-5: Rodney Alexander(R,resigned)
MA-5: Ed Markey(D,elected)
MO-8: Jo Ann Emerson(R,resigned)
NC-12:Mel Watt(D,appointed)
NJ-1: Rob Andrews(D,investigated)
SC-1: Tim Scott(R,appointed)

Newly-elected special elections 2013-2014:
AL-1: Bradley Byrne(R)
FL-13:David Jolly(R)
FL-19:Curt Clawson(R)
IL-2: Robin Kelly(D)
LA-5: Vance McAllister(R)
MA-5: Katherine Clark(D)
MO-8: Jason Smith(R)
NC-12: Pending Jul.15
NJ-1: Pending Nov.4
SC-1: Mark Sanford(R)
Won primary 2014:
TX-4: John Ratcliffe(R)
VA-7: Dave Brat(R)
GA-11:Barry Loudermilk(R)
GA-10:Jody Hice(R)
MA-6 :Richard Tisei(R)

Retiring to run for Senate in 2014:
AR-4: Tom Cotton(R)
CO-4: Cory Gardner(R)
GA-1: Jack Kingston(R)
GA-10:Paul Broun(R)
GA-11:Phil Gingrey(R)
HI-1: Colleen Hanabusa(D)
IA-1: Bruce Braley(D)
LA-6: Bill Cassidy(R)
MI-14:Gary Peters(D)
MT-0: Steve Daines(R)
OK-5: James Lankford(R)
TX-36:Steve Stockman(R)
WV-2: Shelley Moore Capito(R)

Former Reps running for House in 2014:
AL-5: Parker Griffith(R)
CA-3: Doug Ose(R)
CA-31:Joe Baca(D)
IL-10:Bob Dold(R)
IL-17:Bobby Schilling(R)
KS-4: Todd Tiahrt(R)
MS-4: Gene Taylor(D)
MT-0: Denny Rehberg(R)
NH-1: Frank Guinta(R)
NY-11:Vito Fossella(R)
NY-18:Nan Hayworth(R)
OH-7: John Boccieri(D)
PA-13:Marjorie Margolies(D)
TX-23:Francisco Canseco(R)
Lost primary 2014:
TX-4: Ralph Hall(R)
VA-7: Eric Cantor(R)
GA-11:Bob Barr(R)

Retiring to run for State Office in 2014:
AR-2: Tim Griffin(R)
CA-35:Gloria McLeod(D)
ME-2: Mike Michaud(D)
PA-13:Allyson Schwartz(D)
VI-0: Donna Christensen(D)

Retiring effective Jan. 2015:
AL-6: Spencer Bachus(R)
AZ-7: Ed Pastor(D)
CA-11:George Miller(D)
CA-25:Howard McKeon(R)
CA-31:Gary Miller(R)
CA-33:Henry Waxman(D)
CA-45:John Campbell(R)
IA-3: Tom Latham(R)
MI-4: Dave Camp(R)
MI-6: Tom Petri(R)
MI-12:John Dingell(D)
MN-6: Michele Bachmann(R)
NC-6: Howard Coble(R)
NC-7: Mike McIntyre(D)
NJ-3: Jon Runyan(R)
NJ-12:Rush Holt(D)
NY-4: Carolyn McCarthy(D)
NY-21:Bill Owens(D)
PA-6: Jim Gerlach(R)
UT-4: Jim Matheson(D)
VA-8: James Moran(D)
VA-10:Frank Wolf(R)
WA-4: Doc Hastings(R)
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Page last updated: Aug 03, 2014