Donald Trump’s xenophobia is undeniable. He’s built a campaign on blaming foreigners, be they immigrants in the U.S., global refugees, or just anybody overseas. And they are blamed for everything — for trade deficits, lost jobs, terrorism and just about anything that comes to his bigoted mind.

The Democrats and Democratic interest groups are rightly making a big issue of this. But they are also appealing to xenophobia. While the party is strongly supportive of immigrants, it’s not very kind to foreigners overseas. In fact, its nominee Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and trade unions are blaming foreigners for all kinds of economic problems, without evidence. Specifically, they are pinning way too much on trade and trade agreements – and spouting the Trumpian notion that foreigners are cheating us.

The Democrats need to be called on this. This trade-based xenophobia is unsupported by facts. And it undermines their arguments about Trump when they sound just like Trump.

“Sound just like Trump?” you ask. Really? Well, read below for yourself. I’ve taken quotes from two sources: AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka and Donald Trump. Can you tell which is which?

On TPP (the Pacific trade agreement)

  1. The agreement’s almost totally negotiated before they give him any objectives, and they will come back with a bad agreement. We know a little bit about what’s in it, though it has been kept very secret.
  2. TPP is the biggest betrayal in a long line of betrayals where politicians have sold out U.S. workers.


  1. This will encourage and give opportunity to foreign investors to attack our laws in ways that no U.S. citizen has. It’s specific to corporations and special secret tribunals that they get to access and no American does. That’s just not right. It’s not good for the country. It’s one of the old, tired features of NAFTA.
  2. NAFTA has been a disaster. I’m a free trader. The problem with free trade is, you need smart people representing you. We have the greatest negotiators in the world, but we don’t use them. We use political hacks and diplomats. We use the wrong people. Mexico is smart; they have out-negotiated us to a fare-thee-well. They’re going to be the capital of automobiles pretty soon, the way they’re going.”


  1. Whenever we’re done, we will open up things again and our friends will be our friends and things will go back to normal, but, right now, we need every resource that we have to fight this.
  2. I am all for free trade, but it’s got to be fair. When Ford moves their massive plants to Mexico, we get nothing. I want them to stay in Michigan.


  1. The president has all the business community behind him. He has Wall Street behind him. Fortunately for us, he doesn’t have the American public behind him.
  2. I’m for free and fair trade. But look at the deal Obama cut with South Korea. It was so bad, so embarrassing, that you can hardly believe anyone would sign such a thing. In theory, the agreement Obama signed will do next to nothing to even out the trade imbalance, will further erode American manufacturing and kill more American jobs.


  1. We could stop China. We gave them permanent normal trade relations with us. We could take that away and say, ‘Until you agree with us on a currency manipulation provision, we’re not going to do that.’ And we didn’t even propose one in this agreement.
  2. Because of the monetary devaluations that other countries are constantly doing…against us, it’s very, very hard for our companies in this country, in our country, to compete.


  1. We’re going into [trade] deficit after deficit. Each one of those billions [of dollars] takes jobs out of this country. It hasn’t raised our wages or the wages of our trading partners….. We’ve lost 60,000 factories since the year 2000. Here’s what happens: when you lose industries, you lose the R&D that go along with those. You lose the cutting edge, we’re no longer the leader in anything.
  2. You only have to look at our trade deficit to see that we are being taken to the cleaners by our trading partners. We need tougher negotiations, not protectionist walls around America. We need to ensure that foreign markets are as open to our products as our country is to theirs. Our long-term interests require that we cut better deals with our world trading partners.


  1. Think about a relative that just got laid off or a factory that just got shut down. Think about the school that is doing with less because the manufacturing base has gone and the tax base has left. Think about the lower income that you’re receiving now because we’re not making products, and we’re not buying our own products.
  2. I’m sick of always reading about outsourcing. Why aren’t we talking about “onshoring”? We need to bring manufacturing jobs back home where they belong. Onshoring, or “repatriation,” is a way for us to take back the jobs China is stealing.

Answers: Trumka is 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11 and 13. Trump is 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12 and 14.