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The Contender
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NAFTA: If Trump Left, Would it Benefit America?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/14/2017 Category: Politics
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 743 times Debate No: 104449
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With NAFTA in place, many American companies have loopholes that allow them to be headquartered in Mexico, and sell their goods tax-free to Americans.

There is a huge detriment to this - the negative effects for the workers.

Many companies are outsourcing jobs to Mexico, at the expense of American workers. Since labor cost is so much cheaper in Mexico, thousands of companies have left, seeking that source of cheaper labor.

In September 2016, Ford moved all production of small cars to Mexico. Thousands of jobs were lost in America, soon to be given to Mexicans. Yet another wave of good jobs, disappeared out of the country. Another community with a dwindling future. What"s going to happen to the people that worked there? Given that this has been an accelerating trend, where do we go next, and what happens when millions of people can"t afford living expenses?

In recent years, automakers that include General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Nissan, Mazda, Toyota and Volkswagen have all announced plans to either expand existing plants or build new ones in Mexico.

Mexico has seen a 40% increase in auto jobs since 2008 to 675,000 in 2015 while the U.S. saw only a 15% increase in the same period to more than 900,000. With Mexico"s population in 2015 slightly over a third of America"s population, there should have been three times as many jobs in America.

Needless to say, Donald Trump was quite upset about this move by Ford." He said" "We shouldn"t allow it to happen. They"ll make their cars, they"ll employ thousands of people, not from this country and they"ll sell their cars from across the border".

President Trump chided Ford over their move in January 2017, and Ford scrapped a planned Mexico factory and added 700 jobs in Michigan. President Trump threatened General Motors with a huge border tax, which can not be put in place with NAFTA currently existing.

In a Twitter post hours before Ford"s announcement, Trump wrote, "General Motors is sending Mexican made model of Chevy Cruze to U.S. car dealers-tax free across border. Make in U.S.A. or pay big border tax!"

Trump vowed to hit companies that shift production from America to other countries with a 35 percent tax on their exports into the United States, which can only incentivize countries to move back to the United States, where the target population is, and where taxes wouldn't have to be paid.

This is why NAFTA is detrimental to the United States, and why President Trump should pull out of NAFTA.


Contention 1: Vague Reasoning
Donald Trump has not included a solid reason on why the US should pull out of NAFTA. He has done nothing but speak of a trade deficit with Mexico, and has threatened Automobile companies to increase Taxes. Dozens of cases of Trade Issues have been brought up by Mexico City, Washington, and Ottawa - none have lead to a leader threatening to pull out(1).

So we must ask the question, why does Donald Trump want to pull out of NAFTA when he gives no sound reason. Well, it’s honestly very simple, Trump is trying to increase his popularity with his voters, his move is political instead of economic. The populist fervor in the rural red states that won Trump his voters would lead to him getting support. Trump has repeatedly shown that he doesn’t care about the government, he cares about Trump.

If we want to talk about politics, it is evident that pulling out of NAFTA will be going against the Republican Party platform. The republican platform is free trade and lower tariffs, pulling out of NAFTA and increasing tariffs would be doing the complete opposite. This is why my conservatives, me included, dislike Trump - he is not really conservative. Trump is turning everyone against him. Pulling out of NAFTA is ultimately also a bad move politically.

Contention 2: Economically Unsound
Ultimately pulling out of NAFTA will not benefit the economy. Chad P. Bown, a trade expert, noted that tariffs would revert back to the state they were at under the World Trade Organization. Import tariffs would increase by 3.5%, whereas Canada’s and Mexico’s would increase 4.2% and 7.2% respectively(1). As you can see, our import tariffs would go up lower than our export tariffs, obviously bad for our economy.

It is also a possibility that the US might resume old trade negotiations with only Canada where tariffs were Zeroed, this would lead to a decrease in trade with Mexico. Mostly US exports to Mexico. Mexico is an important trading partner with the US and is imperative that we keep that partnership for the betterment of both country’s economies. There is an existent trade deficit of 60 billion dollars between the US and Mexico, but it has declined in respect to overall US trade(5). This also pales in comparison to the nearly 350 billion dollar trade deficit we have with China.

Economist James Pethokoukis has noted that the lack of tariffs between NAFTA countries has lead to the existence of merged supply line, specifically in the automotive industry. This has lead to the countries, the US included, to have a larger global presence in the industry. Withdrawing from NAFTA would hurt every nation’s standing in this industry, specifically the US and Mexico(3). Mexico has imported nearly 136 billion dollars worth of US produced goods from the US, the US has imported 132 billion dollars worth of good from Mexico(7). Both countries have been growing together, both are beneficiaries. In biology we call this relationship Mutualism.

Contention 3: Effects on Jobs
Contrary to Trump’s lies, NAFTA has had a positive impact on jobs in the US. According to MarketWatch NAFTA has lead to nearly 5 million jobs being created that are involved with trade with Mexico(4). It is only logical to assume that by withdrawing from NAFTA those jobs, and future job creations, would be jeopardized.

Economist Brad DeLong has said that trade deals like NAFTA have not destroyed american manufacturing. The fall of the Auto Industry was inevitable, and cannot be pinned on NAFTA, similar occurrences are happening in Germany, a center for the automobile industry(7). The small effect that it does have are certainly outweighed by the benefits. According to a 2015 Congressional Research Service paper NAFTA does not have such an impact on jobs as opponents may claim.

Trade attorney Scott Lincicome has pointed out that US manufacturing has not slowed substantially after the passage of NAFTA. The US is the second largest manufacturer of products, and the third largest exporter. The US is also number one in direct foreign investments, nearly double second place. He has also said that NAFTA has resulted in the increase of average household income by at least $2800(8).

In conclusion, it is painfully obvious from all the benefits of NAFTA that the US should not withdraw from the agreement. NAFTA has lead to economic increase and a large growth in jobs. We should not be following the whims of a president that knows nothing of our economy. This is yet another example of politics bringing on bad economics.

Note: I have decided not to rebut any of my opponent’s claims because that would give me another Rebuttal round, and that doesn’t seem fair(Also I am running out of space). Good Luck to him!
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