U.S. Conservative Coalition urges President Obama to abandon NAFTA and preserve America's sovereignty and independence
On August 8, 2009, the Coalition to Block the North American Union will hold a news conference in Guadalajara (Mexico) on the occasion of the North American Leaders' Summit being conducted by President Barack Obama of the United States with President Felipe Calderon of Mexico and Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada, said a communiqué sent to ISRIA.
Quoting op-eds written by U.S. President Obama that dealt with the need of more transparency about the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Coalition's chairman Howard Phillips called for "President Obama to fulfill his pledge to restore transparency and citizen involvement in the summit, and to abandon the Bush scheme of creating a North American Union similar to the European Union."
“The Bush policy of attempting to ‘harmonize’ laws and regulations risks tearing apart, not bringing together, our neighbors. Policies important and useful in one country may be counter-productive or destructive in another. Applying a one-size-fits-all scheme for important laws and regulations must be rejected," Phillips wrote. “President Obama now has an historic opportunity to break free of these and other failed Bush policies and begin more sustainable and transparent policies which respect the independence of each nation,” he added.
Phillips warned NAFTA would undermine the independence and self-determination of Canada and Mexico. And he takes the European Union as a model (or a counter-model) which has become "the dominant political influence over its 27 member nations". Somekind of a "coup d'Etat" against sovereignty that the Coalition wants to prevent.
NAFTA's effects, both positive and negative, have been quantified by several economists. Some argue that NAFTA has been positive for Mexico while others argue that NAFTA has been beneficial to business owners and elites in all three countries, but has had negative impacts for the poor. The NAFTA agreement was signed into law in the U.S. on December 8, 1993, by President Bill Clinton and went into effect on January 1, 1994.
"Because of the economic crisis and growing unemployment, there's no great deal of interest in the U.S. to apply or to comply with all the items in NAFTA" analyst Charles Rault said. In a joint press conference with Mexican counterpart Felipe Calderon last April, U.S. President Obama said "that (further) negotiations (on NAFTA) are going to need to proceed in a very careful and deliberate way, because we don't want to discourage trade".
"(...) If we act intelligently we will understand that if we improve the North American competitiveness as a region that entails Canada, United States and Mexico, if we improve the competitive conditions of our entire region, vis-à-vis other regions such as Asia or Eastern Europe or the rest of Latin America, then I do believe we will be able to come out of this problem much, much faster," Calderon told Obama during that same conference.
read the full Coalition's communiqué
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