Trump Lands Himself Some Unusual Allies With TPP Move

REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

Alex Pfeiffer White House Correspondent
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President Donald Trump landed himself the support of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders,  AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka and Teamsters Union president James Hoffa by withdrawing the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership Monday.

The 12-nation free-trade agreement was heavily criticized by President Trump on the campaign trail, and his executive order fulfilled a campaign promise to tear up the agreement. President Trump is now seeking to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement

Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders said in a statement that he is “glad the Trans-Pacific Partnership is dead and gone.”

“Now is the time to develop a new trade policy that helps working families, not just multinational corporations. If President Trump is serious about a new policy to help American workers, then I would be delighted to work with him,” the Vermont senator added. Democratic senators Robert Casey and Tammy Baldwin joined Sen. Sanders in supporting Trump’s decision.

As the leader of the largest union in the U.S., Richard Trumka backed Hillary Clinton in the presidential election — but he sided with Trump Monday. “Today’s announcement that the US is withdrawing from TPP and seeking a reopening of NAFTA is an important first step toward a trade policy that works for working people,” Trumka said in a statement.

The Teamsters Union, with over 1 million members, also signaled their support for Trump. Hoffa, the union’s president, said: “Today, President Trump made good on his campaign promise to withdraw the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership. With this decision, the president has taken the first step toward fixing 30 years of bad trade policies that have cost working Americans millions of good-paying jobs.”

Trump met with several union leaders Monday in the White House and said, “we’re going to get them working again.”