Krauthammer: Hillary’s Position on Trade Deal 'Could Provoke’ Elizabeth Warren to Run for President

Fox News contributor Charles Krauthammer hypothesized on Wednesday’s Special Report with Bret Baier that, if Hillary Clinton moves to either support or remain indecisive on the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal, it “could provoke” liberal Senator Elizabeth Warren (Mass.) to challenge Clinton for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination.

Despite having previously hailed the deal in 2011 while Secretary of State as “the gold standard,” Clinton has yet to fully comment on TPP since legislation was introduced in Congress to ratify the deal. 

Prior to Krauthammer, The Hill’s A.B. Stoddard and The Weekly Standard’s Steve Hayes first commented on the story and the growing rift within the Democratic Party over the deal between progressives (who oppose the deal) and President Obama (who supports it).

When host Bret Baier turned to the syndicated columnist, Krauthammer described Clinton’s ducking of the issue as “not exactly a profile in courage” and especially considering that free trade “is a net good” that can be proven true. That being said, he added that free trade results in “a net benefit” with there still being “losers and the losers are Democrats, the losers are unions” who “are identifiable and they speak out.”

Following that setup, he predicted what he think Hillary will do: 

I think what Hillary is going to do – even though she knows this is the right thing to do and it’s going to be a really good deal, she will not oppose it in principal. She'll say, well, if it's worked out, I haven't seen the details, she'll delay until it's published, until it can be read and then, I think she will oppose it by saying, well, you know, it's just the way it's written, there are things inside of it, if I become president, I'll try to improve it and I think she'll get herself on the correct side for her own left and as a way to prevent Elizabeth Warren. 

If not, Krauthammer concluded that he could envision this possible scenario coming to fruition in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary:

I could see her getting so upset about this and making it her big issue that could provoke her entry into the race and, as Steve said, the one thing she wants to do, Hillary, is wants to keep Warren out of the race cause she’s the only one who could challenge her.

The relevant portion of the transcript from FNC’s Special Report with Bret Baier on April 22 can be found below.

FNC’s Special Report with Bret Baier
April 22, 2015
6:43 p.m. Eastern

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER: Look, I think when you have a 50 point lead and you can't take a position on an issue that is so obvious, her husband supported it with NAFTA. She wants to walk it back. She said it was the gold standard. It shows a certain lack – it’s not exactly a profile in courage. You know, Mike Kinsley, the editor of The New Republic once said to me, there's not a lot of proposition in economics or politics that are mathematically provable to be true. Free trade being a net good is one of those few, demonstrated by David Ricardo in 1817. So, that's two centuries and it remains unrefuted. The problem is there are winners and losers. There’s a net benefit, but there are losers and the losers are Democrats, the losers are unions. They are identifiable and they speak out. I think what Hillary is going to do – even though she knows this is the right thing to do and it’s going to be a really good deal, she will not oppose it in principal. She'll say, well, if it's worked out, I haven't seen the details, she'll delay until it's published, until it can be read and then, I think she will oppose it by saying, well, you know, it's just the way it's written, there are things inside of it, if I become president, I'll try to improve it and I think she'll get herself on the correct side for her own left and as a way to prevent Elizabeth Warren. I could see her getting so upset about this and making it her big issue that could provoke her entry into the race and, as Steve said, the one thing she wants to do, Hillary, is wants to keep Warren out of the race cause she’s the only one who could challenge her.

NB Daily Campaigns & Elections 2016 Presidential Economy Liberals & Democrats Fox News Channel Special Report Video Charles Krauthammer Hillary Clinton Elizabeth Warren
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