Hillary Clinton surrogate Jennifer Granholm defended Clinton Friday for supporting the Trans-Pacific Partnership while she worked for President Obama because she wouldn't have stayed in the Cabinet otherwise and "she's going to do what her boss tells her."
New Day host Alisyn Camerota noted Donald Trump's GOP nomination speech made a play for Bernie Sanders voters who were angry about trade agreements that they viewed as harmful to American workers. Clinton pushed the TPP, fiercely loathed by the Democratic Party's left flank, more than 40 times as secretary of state. She called it the "gold standard" of trade agreements "that will help create new jobs and opportunities here at home."
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However, Clinton flip-flopped once she was running for president to prevent Sanders from getting to her left on the issue.
"There's no doubt that trade is an important and huge issue, and we have to adopt trade agreements that are fair," Granholm said. "She is saying that same thing."
"But he never had his hands on trade policy, and she has," host Chris Cuomo said.
"She supported her boss in the Trans-Pacific Partnership, but when it came down for her evaluation of it, when she was gone, she said, ‘I'm not supporting that,'" Granholm said. "But she's not going to go against the person who appointed her to the position. She's going to do what her boss tells her."
"That's leadership?" Cuomo asked.
"Well, come on," Granholm said. "Your dad appoints somebody as a member of his Cabinet, and they go against their boss? They won't be in the Cabinet very long if they do that."
Granholm, the former Democratic governor of Michigan, was referring to former New York Gov. Mario Cuomo (D.). Chris Cuomo's brother Andrew is the current Democratic governor of New York.
Sanders supporters battled to get language opposing the TPP into the Democratic party platform in 2016, but they failed, largely because establishment figures didn't want to embarrass the White House.