Free Trade Update

Matt Yglesias reports from the convention that Laura D’Andrea Tyson (former Clinton National Economic Adviser and current Kerry advisor), in no uncertain terms, stated that Kerry supports free trade:

It is an irony that “the evidence is getting stronger every day that globalization has benefits while skepticism is growing stronger.” “When people say, ‘well, listen to what the Kerry campaign has said about trade in some of the primaries, we are concerned that Sen Kerry will move US away from trade integration.’ To which I say, well, think about the issue of national campaigns in the US. Recognize that what might be said in one primary . . . is not an indicator of the future.” The thing to look at “is Sen Kerry’s very courageous, very consistent, very long-term record on trade and global economic integration.” A man who has consistently voted for a pro-trade, pro-integration agenda. His career has been oriented in this direction…

Every country must find a way to ensure that those dislocated by economic integration find support for that dislocation. Globalization creates aggregate benefits for countries, but internal distribution of costs and benefits is uneven. “It must be taken entirely seriously as a policy agenda what to do for those who are not better off.” The voices of protectionism in America are the voices of those who have lost, a Kerry administration would do a better job of taking care of those people which will make their voices grow less stridently anti-trade. Thus, Kerry would be better for free trade.

“I want to assure you that a Kerry-Edwards administration will continue in the great American tradition of leading the way on global economic integration. Thank you very much.”

That bit about having to lie in the primaries is a bit, well, too honest.


P.S. Time to get off of that fence, Dan — the free trade grass is greener to your left.