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Saturday, November 12, 2011
Obama Quest for Free Trade Gets Resistance from Hawaii Congressional Delegation
By Andrew Walden @ 3:36 PM :: 6929 Views :: Energy, Environment, National News, Ethics, World News, Family

by Andrew Walden

The Star-Advertiser editors believe President Barack Obama is right to push for Free Trade across the Pacific:

Some members of Congress may sneer today about the president devoting nine days in Hawaii, Indonesia and Australia as the Nov. 23 deadline nears for finding more than $1 trillion in cuts for budget agreement. Critics, though, should grasp the realities that the financial troubles are worldwide, growth in the Asia-Pacific area is burgeoning, and U.S. efforts to counterbalance China in the regional global economy are essential.

Obama cannot turn around his most extensive travel of the year at this point without seeming to give Asia a stiff arm, especially by postponing the Australian leg for the third time. At particular stake is establishment of a Pacific-wide free trade zone necessary to balance China's gigantic trade advantage.

Free Trade is supported by many countries in South and East Asia:

The world is laughing at the dead legacy of Frantz Fanon. The third world rejects victimology and embraces development and trade—and has nothing but success to show for it. All except for Hawaii’s reactionary and backwards Congressional delegation. In spite of Hawaii’s dependence on tourism—a US export—Hawaii’s Congressional delegation have voted against free trade again and again.

Only after extensive arm-twisting by local business and tourism interests did the ‘fab four’ deign to deviate from the line dictated to Democrats by Big Labor. Here are the votes on Pacific Rim Free Trade pacts from the week leading up to October 17:

United States-Korea Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act - Vote Passed (83-15, 2 Not Voting)

On Wednesday, the Senate voted to implement a trade pact with South Korea. The House approved the bill earlier in the day and the president is expected to sign the bill into law.

Sen. Daniel Inouye voted YES......send
e-mail or see bio
Sen. Daniel Akaka voted YES......send e-mail or see bio

United States-Panama Trade Promotion Agreement Implementation Act - Vote Passed (77-22, 1 Not Voting)

The Senate approved a trade pact with Panama. The House passed the bill earlier the same day and the president is expected to sign it into law.

Sen. Daniel Inouye voted NO......send
e-mail or see bio
Sen. Daniel Akaka voted NO......send e-mail or see bio


United States-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement Implementation Act - Vote Passed (66-33, 1 Not Voting)

The Senate passed this bill to implement a trade agreement with Colombia. The House approved the bill earlier in the day and the president is expected to sign it into law.

Sen. Daniel Inouye voted YES......send
e-mail or see bio
Sen. Daniel Akaka voted NO......send e-mail or see bio

Recent House Votes

United States-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement Implementation Act - Vote Passed (262-167, 4 Not Voting)

On Wednesday, the House passed this bill to implement a trade pact with Colombia. The Senate approved the bill later in the day and the president is expected to sign it into law.

Rep. Colleen Hanabusa voted NO......send
e-mail or see bio
Rep. Mazie Hirono voted NO......send e-mail or see bio

United States-Panama Trade Promotion Agreement Implementation Act - Vote Passed (300-129, 4 Not Voting)

The House approved this bill to implement a trade pact with Panama. The Senate approved the bill later in the day and the president is expected to sign it into law.

Rep. Colleen Hanabusa voted NO......send
e-mail or see bio
Rep. Mazie Hirono voted NO......send e-mail or see bio


United States-Korea Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act - Vote Passed (278-151, 4 Not Voting)

The House passed this trade agreement with South Korea. The Senate approved the bill later in the day and the president is expected to sign it into law.

Rep. Colleen Hanabusa voted YES......send
e-mail or see bio
Rep. Mazie Hirono voted NO......send e-mail or see bio

---30---

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