In Peru FTA, U.S. Jobs Are Main Export (Rep. Phil Hare)

This week, the House will vote on another NAFTA-style trade agreement under which good, high-paying American jobs are the main export. A vote on the Peru FTA comes at a time America has lost over 3 million manufacturing jobs.

Many Freshman Democrats like myself campaigned on the issue of reforming our trade policies to protect workers both at home and abroad. Regrettably, the Peru FTA represents more of the same.

The labor and environmental standards agreed to by the White House and Congressional Democrats are good in theory, but there is no evidence showing President Bush will enforce them. Just last week, he threatened to veto a bill improving assistance for displaced American workers. If the President won’t lend a helping hand to workers here at home, how can we expect him to protect the 2 million children currently working in Peru -- many in mines or as domestic servants?

Democrats have always been the party that stands up for average workers. I hope we will continue that tradition by defeating the Peru FTA.

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