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Haphazard Biden or Methodical Warren: Who’s better at Trade?

Democrats Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren are the potential candidates that may contest the upcoming US Presidential elections of 2020, but who has a better approach to trade?


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Haphazard Biden or Methodical Warren: Who’s better at Trade? | Newsline | DKODING | Image Credits: India Today

Recently in the third Democratic presidential debate, all the top 10 democratic candidates shared the stage. While Joe Biden has been the favourite, it was Elizabeth Warren who went unscathed during the Democrat 2020 debate and similar was the result on trade views. It shows that she had sharper points which were clear and loud to the citizens.

Warren’s inclusive approach to Trade couldn’t be matched by Biden’s orthodox ideology.

The ongoing Sino-US trade war and instability in the international market forced the world’s economy to slow down. It is affecting all the other big economies as well. That has compelled both the US and China to come forward to sign a trade agreement.

Joe Biden on resolving trade issues in 2020

Joe Biden had the most speaking time in the 3-hour Democrat debate 2020. His point on US-China trade war was more or less copy-pasting the problems already mentioned by President Trump in his press conference and tweets. 

In the debate, Biden stated that he would make a policy where he can rope in China which is going to rule the roads with its Belt and Road project. For 2020, Joe Biden’s approach of inclusiveness opined that while US holds the reins of almost 25% of the world economy, his move will be to coerce 25% more to join and be allies.

Furthermore, he said that the trade deficit is not the real problem which is haunting the US economy. Rather, it is China stealing US’ intellectual property, dumping steel and not following the WTO regulations.

He also added that if the US doesn’t set the rules, then it might be in a position where China will narrate the rules. Therefore, we need to organize the world against China and make them stop corrupt practices.

However, he also supported Senator Elizabeth Warren’s points of including farmers, labours and environmentalists at the table.

Elizabeth Warren on resolving trade issues in 2020

In this third democratic debate for the presidential election and also in one of her articles published under the title “Trade- on our terms”, Warren has been vocal and clear. The article provides an agenda towards a new style of approaching economic patriotism to overhaul and refurbish the approach towards trade.

Attacking Giant Multinationals

Warren staunchly believes that trade policy in the US has been broken for decades. She opines that trade policy has been dictated by giant multinational corporations and their lobbies. These corporations are the one who shaped the US trade policies and also have been performing the role of trade negotiator for decades.

Corrupt negotiating practices

Following the current approach, negotiating text is always kept confidential for all except some corporate executives and industries. These are done to favour the corporate interests and when it is accomplished in the text, only then it is released to the public.

Then, Congress under its fast track procedure approves the trade agreements. In this, the representatives have to vote up or down on the agreement without providing any chance to propose and secure any changes on the agreement.

Warren assured that under her administration, they would follow a more transparent process while approving any trade agreement and negotiation talks that will offer the public a genuine chance to take the advantage.

Furthermore, she added that it is very important who sits at the table. Thus, she wants to first negotiate with unions, small farmers, environmentalists and human rights activists before corporates.

How will Warren’s negotiation procedure work?

  • Publically publishing the trade negotiation drafts in the Federal Register and providing impetus opportunity to the public to comment on the drafts.

  • Trade advisory committees will give priority to the views of labours, workers, consumers and environmentalists by providing them more representation in every existing advisory committee.

  • Providing a regional analysis of a trade agreement and its impact on the economy.

  • More representation to the public and elected representation in the Congressional approval process to shape any trade agreement.

Favouring Americans workers and businesses

Warren said that American workers, farms and small businesses cannot be undermined. Inclusive trade policy will help US build a stronger economy, thus its Elizabeth Warren’s biggest card for 2020.

She also reasoned that multinational billionaires outsourcing millions of jobs had led to job loss and depressed wages for the American workers.

Warren also added that her administration would defend American jobs, raise wages and farm income. Furthermore, she would promote domestic manufacturing, protect worker pensions, prohibit violence against workers, and promote equal pay for equal work for women.

Other of her pledges include combatting climate change, lowering drug prices, raising the living standards worldwide and above all engaging in any international trade only if it benefits American families.

On Environment and Labour laws

The US has alleged for years that China does not follow labour laws and environmental protection standards. Moreover, there have been claims of currency manipulation. Even countering Julian Castro’s comments on US having leverage in trade, Elizabeth Warren said every country wants access to the American market.

Therefore, if they want to sell their goods to American consumers then they need to raise their quality standards as per the American food safety standards, labour standards and environmental standards. Warren also said, her administration will push for a new non-sustainable economy under WTO rules that will impose tougher penalties on countries not following labour laws and sustainable environmental practices.

On unfair trade practices and imposing duties

  • For investigations into unfair trade practices, her administration will create an automatic trigger that will produce evidence against the unfair trade practices followed by any industry. It will also include the provision of violating labour laws and environmental standards.

  • To support domestic industries, her administration can impose duties on foreign goods. The income from these duties should go to the American workers, not to the shareholders and executives.

  • They will also review duties every six months and can lift those duties if the companies won’t be able to prove that the benefits of these duties are going to their American workers.

The agenda and debate by the nominees like Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren of the 2020 US presidential election can be an eye-opener for the people to choose the preferred candidate. Trade can be an influential tool to persuade people of America to vote the one who actually willing to work and leave a mark on the entire globe.



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