Congressional Action: CAFTA

On July 26, several Members of Congress discussed CAFTA on the floor of the House. Two samples of these speeches, one opposed to CAFTA, one supportive of it:

“Mr. Speaker, Chicago used to be known as the Candy Capital of the World. Unfortunately, sugar makers, food processors, and other sugar users have been driven out of the city by high prices.Despite all of my other misgivings, I had hoped that CAFTA would provide us with some relief. But, unfortunately, to let in only 151,000 metric tons of sugar from CAFTA countries over a 15-year period will not put a dent in sugar prices. It will not help the candy makers and food processors in Chicago. Therefore, I shall vote against CAFTA and urge all of my colleagues to vote likewise.”

-Rep. Danny Davis

“Mr. Speaker, this week we will debate CAFTA. All of the Nation’s major newspaper editorial boards support CAFTA. Listen to these quotes.

The Washington Post cites a study that shows U.S. income would increase by $17 billion under CAFTA. The Wall Street Journal says CAFTA would expand the market for U.S. goods with the 44 million consumers of six Central American countries. The Journal goes on to say that American farmers would be among the biggest winners under CAFTA.

USA Today says CAFTA would slash tariffs on agriculture products coming from the U.S. The L.A. Times says the benefits of free trade are evenly spread across society, citing rapid growth and higher income of free trading nations.

Even the New York Times claims that this free trade agreement “deserves to approved.”

In addition to these editorial boards, Central American workers and leaders overwhelmingly support this agreement. Mr. Speaker, they cannot all be wrong. I, therefore, urge my colleagues to vote in favor of CAFTA. More trade means more jobs.”

-Rep. Joe Pitts

Note: “Congressional Action” is a blog feature highlighting an official activity undertaken by or in Congress, very often chosen at random, to provide an educational snapshot of our Congress at work. Opinions and facts represented in this feature do not necessarily represent the views of Amy Ridenour or The National Center for Public Policy Research, nor is this feature intended to express an opinion on any measure under consideration by the Congress.

The National Center for Public Policy Research is a communications and research foundation supportive of a strong national defense and dedicated to providing free market solutions to today’s public policy problems. We believe that the principles of a free market, individual liberty and personal responsibility provide the greatest hope for meeting the challenges facing America in the 21st century.