How is globalization and free trade working for the United States? What does Obama think about it?

Obama’s position on NAFTA from his website:

Obama spokesperson Bill Burton says that Obama all will work to make NAFTA a better deal for American workers.  Including amending NAFTA to include labor and environmental standards.

In the Democratic debate on February 27, 2008: paraphrasing… Obama said that he wants to be an advocate on behalf of the workers.  Shipping jobs overseas leaving employees without health care, pension, and with seven dollar an hour jobs is devastating on the community.  That’s not the way we’re going to prosper and move forward.

Associated Press October 10, 2007…

Active trading is a key way to keep the United States competitive.  “Were not going to draw a moat around the United States economy.  If we do that then China is still trading, India is still going to be trading”… Obama voted against the Central American free trade agreement CAFTA and opposes the pending trade deal with South Korea.  “I think that NAFTA and CAFTA did not reflect the interests of the American workers but reflected the interests of the stock owners on Wall Street because they did not contain the sorts of labor positions and environmental provisions that should have been embedded and should have been enforceable in those agreements.”.

2007 United States global trade debt by country:

China … US$259.1 billion (up 11.4% from 2006, up 59.9% from 2004)
Japan … $83.1 billion (down 6.1%, up 10.5%)
Mexico … $74 billion (up 15.4%, up 64.4%)
Canada … $65 billion (down 10.7%, down 1%)
Germany … $44.5 billion (down 6.9%, down 2.8%)
Nigeria … $28.9 billion (up 12.5%, up 97.3%)
Venezuela … $28.4 billion (up 0.6%, up 40.4%)
Saudi Arabia … $24.5 billion (up 1.8%, up 57.3%)
Ireland … $21.6 billion (up 7.5%, up 12.5%)
Italy … $20.9 billion (up 3.7%, up 20.4%)
In this article… Obama is quoted as saying “now is the time where we have to be very careful about any signals of protectionism” and that he promised that the United States would continue to meet its international trade obligations.

Obama included a “buy America” provision in his $787 billion economic stimulus package which originally proposed that only US steel be used for infrastructure projects.  The provisions have since been watered down.

 United States trade deficit by country