On trade trip, Mayor Rawlings discusses new council members, his term

Mayors and business leaders talking trade

MONTREAL – Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings spoke at an economic forum in Montreal, Quebec on Wednesday hoping to modernize the North American Free Trade Agreement rather than dismantle it like President Donald Trump considered during the presidential campaign.

“When NAFTA was signed to today we’re three and a half times bigger as a market because of that, once you take inflation out," Rawlings told WFAA in a Skype interview from Montreal on Wednesday. "The amount of international and global trade is remarkable. Our number one trading partner is Toronto, number two is Mexico City and number three is Montreal."

He and Mayor Betsy Price, along with a delegation from the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, are on a week-long trade trip to Canada. They visited Toronto on Monday.

During the interview with WFAA, Rawlings was also asked whether losing three allies on city council during Saturday’s runoff election will impact his agenda.

“I hope not," he said. "I’ve already talk to the new elected folks, a couple of them I already worked with before. Tennell Atkins and Dwaine Caraway want to do what’s right for Dallas. I’ve talked to the other two. I had to get on this trip so we haven’t had a face-to-face. But look, I think these folks want to do right for Dallas and that’s all I care about and hopefully we’ll get together and pull in the same direction in the coming years."

There’s also chatter in Dallas politics that Rawlings might not fulfill his second term since he lost some allies and perhaps influence on council.

He chuckled and dismissed the question.

“When I first ran, people didn’t believe I was going to do it for four years," Rawlings said. "They didn’t believe I was going to run the second time. They didn’t believe I would make it this long. Who knows. God willing, I’ll be working for the citizens of Dallas the next two years. There’s a lot to be done. And I’m very excited about it."

When pressed to clarify whether he will remain in office through the end of his term next year, Rawlings said he intends to stay.

© 2017 WFAA-TV


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