28 U.S. Congressman Sponsor Bill to Repeal NAFTA: How Many Will Join Them?

by Julian Ku

I doubt it has a chance of passing, but it would be interesting to see how many votes this bill will get:

A small group of U.S. lawmakers unveiled legislation on Thursday to withdraw from the North American Free Trade Agreement in the latest sign of congressional disillusionment with free-trade deals.

The bill spearheaded by Rep. Gene Taylor, a Mississippi Democrat, would require President Barack Obama to give Mexico and Canada six months notice that the United States will no longer be part of the 16-year-old trade pact.

Next up: a vote later this year on whether to stay in the WTO.

http://opiniojuris.org/2010/03/06/28-us-congressman-sponsor-bill-to-repeal-nafta-how-many-will-join-them/

5 Responses

  1. An unsurprising response, to be in favour of free trade except when it’s not to your advantage (i.e. other countries/companies being more successful than home ones).

    I suspect these people will be pushing for bilateral agreements that are heavily one-sided against the other country – “Give us full, unrestricted access to your market or you won’t get access to ours. Oh, and by the way, we’ll apply all sorts of arbitrary restrictions on your access whenever we feel like it”.

  2. Domestic politics – if it gets sufficient valence then it becomes a US/Canada/Mexico discussion.  If they work at it they may be able to modify the agreement to assuage each countries concerns.  If not, President can go through termination under it.  But, none of this happens in a vacuum and people and other states will look long and hard at us – as will the financiers of our wonderful debt burden in the world.
    Best,
    Ben

  3. Can one see a return to isolationism (or would better grammar suggest “isolation”) here?  I see also the note about, “a vote later this year on whether to stay in the WTO.”
    May I suggest that there is a broader issue here?  In a sense, there is no International Law, only such Law as may be accepted – and indeed only accepted pro tem – by Nation States.  A state such as US has no need to comply with agreements, laws or treaties which are not to its advantage.  There is no power to enforce against it.
    I would argue that there can be no true International law while there is no supranational authority capable of enforcing that law erga omnes.

  4. Not sure if that last line was snark, but the vote to leave the WTO is a regular 5 year occurrence, required by the Uruguay Round Agreements Act. Last time, it got maybe 100 or so votes….

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