Don Bonker is a former Member of Congress from Washington’s Third District and former chair of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Trade. He now lives on Bainbridge Island and consults on international trade issues.
In just four years, the Trump presidency alienated most of our traditional allies, whose loyalty is now in question when it comes to China. If Biden does not rally these countries to get back onboard, America will definitely be in a weaker position, as Beijing’s ruling party well knows.
Katherine Chi Tai received a 98-0 vote, unanimous support from both parties as the next U.S. Trade Representative (USTR). This is a bit odd, considering the USTR will have a pivotal role in shaping the Administration’s trade policy, and more significantly the U.S. China relationship, currently plagued with tensions and distrust.
Any newly elected occupant of the White House would reverse Trump's disastrous policies, but it’s not going to happen with the Biden Administration. Why? Long before Trump arrived on the scene, Biden’s Democratic Party had been charging down the path of protectionism, driven by organized labor.
Our bonding became evident among our Congressional colleagues, who took notice of how our friendships transcended the usual political norms on the House floor. This was before the rise of the Moral Majority and its politicizing of the evangelical community,
Regardless of whether the offices on the ballot were partisan or non-partisan, I would meet with the the Republican and Democratic county chairpersons, always collegial and cooperative, to insure we had sufficient bi-partisan volunteers to be on duty election day.
Washington’s Third Congressional District reflects a political re-alignment that’s occurring nationwide. Those disgruntled mill workers and older Joe Sixpack former Dems in rural areas are now Trump loyalists. The offset is the suburban areas where professional, upper-middle-class Republicans no longer can stomach or vote for Donald Trump.