November 11, 2010
Statement on the Korea Free Trade Agreement
by Arthur Stamoulis, Director, Citizens Trade Campaign
“The President’s decision not to force a trade deal that isn’t right for the American people is a hopeful sign.
“Polling this fall plainly showed that voters blame offshoring for the country’s high unemployment and continued economic stress. Advancing the largest free trade agreement since NAFTA certainly would not have allayed voters’ concerns.
“This is underscored by Pew Charitable Trust poll results released this week that found a strong majority of Americans believe that free trade agreements lead to job losses and that the public particularly questions the impacts of trade with South Korea and China.
“As negotiated by the Bush administration, the current Korea pact represents exactly the type of job-killing trade policy that voters have rejected in election-after-election and that President Obama himself campaigned against. The President made both the smart policy choice and the smart political choice in not rushing forward with an agreement that would have cost the country jobs.
“We’re very supportive of the President’s trade reform commitments, and look forward to greater progress in that area. A trade reform agenda is something that could unite the electorate, and hopefully Congress as well.”
The Citizens Trade Campaign (CTC) is a national coalition whose members include labor, environmental, family farm, faith and civil society organizations, as well as regional, state and city-based coalitions, organizations and individual activists throughout the United States.