Of the many Nebraskans in Cleveland this week attending the GOP National Convention, former Governor Dave Heineman is there supporting his party. Heineman says he is very impressed on Donald Trump’s view on trade.
Heineman says, “Agriculture is the foundation of the economy in Nebraska and really when you think about it America. We have to feed the world. That is why trade agreements are so important. Generally they are beneficial for agriculture but not the rest of the economy. That is where Donald Trump I think hit on a very effective message. The emphasis has to be fair trade as well as free trade and we have to make sure that manufacturing and other segments of our economy benefit from trade deals just like agriculture does.”
Heineman says Trump also knows when to walk away from the table without a deal. That is a very important part of international trade. As governor, Heineman went on more than a dozen trade missions and says that almost happened during a trade negotiation with Cuba. Heineman says, “I actually told their negotiators we have given them the rock-bottom price and if you don’t agree with this we will walk away from Cuba without a deal. That brought them to the final stages of negotiations that ended up with a $30-million trade deal and we followed that up a year later with another $30-million trade deal.”
Heineman says it is always a lot of fun to be at a convention and to reconnect with friends from across America. When asked if he was ready to throw his back into the political ring, Heineman said “no, not right at the moment”.