(May 22, 1:17 p.m.) CHICAGO — Republican presidential nominee John McCain noted that no industry rivals the restaurant industry in the creation of new jobs — perhaps another 2 million jobs in the next decade, “but that depends on the choices we make in Washington regarding economic policy,” he said.

McCain addressed the National Restaurant Association at its annual International Foodservice marketplace show on May 19 in Chicago.

“While your industry plans to create 2 million jobs, the Democratic candidates plan to tax Americans by another trillion dollars. Your plans for growth and their plan for taxes are going to be hard to square,” McCain, with Sen. Joe Lieberman, D-Conn., at his side, told the packed grand ballroom at McCormick Place.

McCain addressed the misappropriation of funds in the name of the farm bill.

“The original idea was to provide funds to small farmers in hard times. Nowadays, small farmers have been forgotten, and instead Congress sends a steady supply of subsidies to agribusiness.”

He pointed out that Congress voted to give $250 million tax dollars to a company that described itself as the largest, most geographically diverse land owner in the nation.

“Both parties carrying on like this shows such disregard for the public treasury of interest,” he said. “There’s only one proper response, and that’s a presidential veto, and that’s what I would do.”

Speaking about the differences he has with Democrats, McCain said, “If I’m elected president, this country will honor its international agreements, including NAFTA.”

He noted that legislation regarding a trade agreement with Colombia is being held up in the Senate.

“American exporters pay an extra $3.5 million in tariffs each day because there is no trade agreement,” McCain said.

He also pointed out the importance of a trade agreement with South Korea, which he deemed “ a faithful ally” boasting the 13th largest economy in the world.

McCain talks trade agreements, taxes in NRA speech
John McCain, addressing the National Restaurant Association on May 19, stressed the importance of trade agreements such as a prospective pact with Colombia that is being held up in the Senate. “American exporters pay an extra $3.5 million in tariffs each day because there is no trade agreement,” McCain said.