Rick Perry on Trade Policy

Last Updated : Sep 23, 2011

Summary

Governor Perry supports open borders and free trade programs such as NAFTA. After assuming office, Governor Perry proposed the development of the NAFTA superhighway through the state of Texas. Although the project was widely opposed due to cost reasons, sovereignty reasons, and the use of a Spanish construction company for the work, Governor Perry stated that the superhighway would fuel trade between the US and Central and South America.

In 2001, Governer Perry spoke at a border summit in Mexico where he noted that the US was just beginning to see the fruits of NAFTA. He expressed his support for open borders, and a shared financial responsibility throughout the border reqion. He even went so far as proposing cross-border health insurance plans.

In 2004, Governor Perry noted in speeches that free trade was one of three facets that were needed for a successful future. The other two were education and job creation. He also stated that the free flow of goods was essential to the future of Texas.

 

NAFTA Super Highway

Free trade in Texas has been dominated by the NAFTA Superhighway, also known as the Trans Texas Corridor. The project is an 8 lane highway along with rail lines and utility lines running from Mexico through Texas and on into Canada. The purpose of the project is to expedite traffic and trade on the North American continent by easing the flow of goods through the nations. Governor Perry has been the strongest supporter of the project, selling bonds and pushing the construction over the request of the people of Texas.

 

Border Summit Remarks

In August of 2001, Governor Perry spoke at a Texas / Mexico border summit. He stated there that the fruits of NAFTA were only beginning to ripen and that he supported the Mexico President's views that the border between Texas and Mexico should be open to people and products.

 

Meeting with President Fox

In June of 2004, Governor Perry met with President Vicente Fox of Mexico. They discussed the need to speed up the flow of traffic between the two countries, the water sharing between Mexico and Texas, and the selling of cattle from Texas to Mexico.

In July of 2004, Governor Perry released a follow-up statement noting his views that free trade was good for the economy.

 

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