McCain 'deeply concerned' about Trump renegotiating NAFTA

Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainJuan Williams: Obama's dire warnings about right-wing media Democrats' squabbling vindicates Biden non-campaign McSally, staff asked to break up maskless photo op inside Capitol MORE (R-Ariz.) is raising concerns about President Trump's plans to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement. 

"I’m deeply concerned by President Trump’s statements today reaffirming his commitment to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)," the border-state Republican said in a statement. 
 
He added that while reworking the trade pact could help benefit the American economy, taking any steps that would make it harder to trade with Mexico or Canada could backfire. 
 
"Any effort to restrict or impose new barriers on our ability to trade with Mexico and Canada could jeopardize the future of this trade agreement and have serious consequences for Arizona and the country," McCain said. 
 
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McCain noted that "facts are a stubborn thing" and "clearly show" that the Clinton-era trade deal has benefited Arizona, including allowing the state to import goods at a lower cost and boosting its ability to export products. 
 
"The free flow of trade has been the foundation of U.S. economic policy for decades, and a major factor in our prosperity and greatness," he said. "We should not have to relearn the lessons of history." 
 
The White House said Thursday that Trump will ask Congress to impose a 20 percent tax on imports from Mexico to help pay for the border wall. 
 
Press Secretary Sean Spicer walked back that statement, noting it was not set in stone but an example of how the wall could be paid for. 
 
 
Meanwhile, Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) noted that "tariffs are a tax on American families." 
 
Trump blasted the U.S.-Mexico trade relationship earlier Thursday, noting it had "been a one-sided deal from the beginning of NAFTA."
 
McCain separately voiced concerns about Trump's decision to pull out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership calling the move a "serious mistake." 
 
He added on Thursday that, "retreating from NAFTA and other international trade agreements will harm our ability to compete in today’s global economy, raise costs for consumers, threaten jobs, and undermine our relations with our closest neighbors."