U.S.-Panama Free Trade Agreement Will Not Pass New Congress

Dec. 19, 2006

U.S.-Panama Free Trade Agreement Will Not Pass New Congress

Statement of Lori M. Wallach, Director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch

The Bush administration strategy seems to be ‘stay the course’ on every failed policy, but it’s still mystifying why the administration would announce a NAFTA-clone agreement weeks after the American public elected a congressional majority that is on the record against status-quo trade deals. The administration should know that it cannot pass this agreement in the new Congress. Instead, it should have talked to the Democrats about what type of deal would actually gain support and be enacted. With the signing of the Colombia Free Trade Agreement last month and now this agreement, it seems that the Bush administration has decided it wants to pick partisan political fights with Democrats rather than expand trade by building a policy consensus about how to move forward together.

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