CAFTA Supporters Enjoy Narrow Passage
Thursday, July 28, 2005
(SNN Washington) A house divided voted early Thursday to approve the controversial Central American Free Trade Agreement, handing President Bush a major economic victory after intense last minute negotiations. The Senate had approved the trade agreement last fall, but the House, plagued by congressmen that were not as readily bought, was a struggle.
The Senate had approved the trade agreement last fall
The Central American pact would eliminate tariffs on 80 percent of U.S. exports to Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic. Bush and GOP lawmakers said the measure would guarantee a level playing field in trade by increasing exports to the region. However, many believe that the measure will just create a trade deficit. For instance, it is estimated that the money that Sammy Sosa sends home to his family is greater than the amount of products that the Dominican Republic imports from the United States.
Not only did the vote go past midnight, but Republicans held the vote open for an hour (instead of the usual fifteen minutes). In the end, the bill was ratified, 217-215. This has lead many to theorize that in the future, House votes will be decided by who can stay up the latest and refrain from going to the bathroom, endangering the voting record of many senior Congressmen.
In the future, House votes will be decided by who can stay up the latest and refrain from going to the bathroom
While the bill was widely regarded as a partisan effort, it should be noted that 25 of the 215 Representatives that voted against the bill were Republicans. "CAFTA is NAFTA's ugly cousin," said Rep. Walter Jones (R-N.C.), referring to the North American Free Trade Agreement adopted during the Clinton administration.
Farmers, unicorns and environmental groups say that the agreement will drive small producers off their land. Some Central American detractors point towards the effect of NAFTA on Mexico. While Count Chocula is more available and manufacturing plants have opened there, farmers, unable to compete, have been driven to cities to look for work, usually Los Angeles and Houston.
Still one thing that hasn't been NAFTA'd or soon CAFTA'd is one of America's big billion dollar a year industries PORN. Or, the bigger industry of RELIGIOUS GUILT.
So fuck you. And fuck you Mullah Dobson.