California lawmaker urges Senate to keep US goods on US ships

Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.) sent a letter to the Senate on Thursday asking the upper chamber not to weaken the Merchant Marine Act of 1920, known as The Jones Act.

The letter comes a day after Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainThe peculiar priorities of Adam Schiff Ocasio-Cortez fires back at Lindsey Graham: 'Graham wants to bring back 1950s McCarthyism' Meghan McCain knocks Lindsey Graham for defending Trump's tweets: 'This is not the person I used to know' MORE (R-Ariz.) filed an amendment to the law that would eliminate the requirement that all goods shipped between U.S. ports be carried by ships built in the U.S., owned by the U.S. and operated by a U.S. crew. 

“I have long advocated for a full repeal of The Jones Act, an antiquated law that has for too long hindered free trade, made U.S. industry less competitive and raised prices for American consumers,” he said.

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McCain went on to reference data from the Congressional Research Service, which found that it costs $6 a barrel to move crude oil from the Gulf Coast to the Northeast United States on a U.S. tanker and $2 a barrel on foreign tanker.

But in his letter to Sen. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiGOP senator: 'Outrageous' to say Trump's tweets about Democratic congresswomen are racist Fox personalities blast Trump's remarks Schumer blisters Republicans over response to Trump tweets: 'Where are you?' MORE (R-Alaska), chairwoman of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, and Sen. John ThuneJohn Randolph ThuneGOP struggles to find backup plan for avoiding debt default GOP frets over nightmare scenario for Senate primaries High anxiety hits Senate over raising debt ceiling MORE (R-S.D.), chairman of the Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, Duncan said the law keeps shipbuilding and ship operating jobs in the U.S.

“Further it guarantees that we will not be held hostage to whims and dictates of foreign ship owners and operators, or foreign mariners when ships and mariners are needed to respond to disasters or support national security requirements,” he said.