Ron Johnson’s Establishment Makeover: Cozying Up to Republicans Who Support Trade Deals That Ship Jobs Overseas

Jul 13, 2010

Does Johnson Agree With His Latest Establishment Republican Mentor
in Supporting Unfair Trade Deals?

MADISON — As he continues to take advice from Republican leaders as part of his establishment makeover, multimillionaire Tea Party Senate Candidate Ron Johnson has aligned himself with Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC), whose fringe extremist views in support of unfair trade deals have wreaked havoc on working families in South Carolina, another sign Ron Johnson stands with special interests over working families.

“By embracing Jim DeMint, who has a track record of supporting unfair trade deals that put jobs for working families at risk, Ron Johnson has made it clear he will march in lockstep with establishment Republicans in Washington. D.C. that support big corporate special interests,” said Mike Tate, Chair of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin.

As part of his long attack on working families, DeMint voted for the Central American Free Trade Agreement that, “Would put thousands of South Carolinians in the unemployment line,” according to the Augusta Chronicle. (12/19/03)

DeMint also said he would have voted for the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and supported Permanent Normal Trade Relations with China, a vote that hurt “tens of thousands of workers in the Upstate,” the Greenville News reported. (11/20/03).

And one day after DeMint became the deciding vote in the House to give President George W. Bush ‘fast-track” authority to push through unfair trade deals, two South Carolina textile plants closed, costing working families 715 jobs. (Greenville News, 12/8/01)

Johnson’s latest Republican political mentor — Johnson previously cited Dick Morris as his inspiration for running — voted in lockstep with George W. Bush and his failed economic policies that caused the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. DeMint voted with Bush 89.5 percent of the time during Bush’s presidency and with Republicans 98 percent of the time while in Congress (CQ Vote Studies).