Jun 24 2015
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) released the following statement after the Senate passed legislation to grant the executive branch Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) for six years:
“International trade supports over 340,000 jobs in Arkansas. That’s one in every five jobs. That number will continue to rise as we open new markets for Arkansas’s agricultural producers, small businesses and globally engaged workforce.
When we trade our goods and services with other nations, we improve market access for American exports, grow our economy and create jobs at home.
That is why we have a responsibility to pursue the strongest free and fair trade agreements that we can negotiate. TPA helps bring our potential trading partners to the table while maintaining Congress’s important role in the process.
To say that Congress is giving the current president, or the next, the ability to unilaterally enter into any agreement is not accurate. TPA creates transparency in trade negotiations. The president must consult closely with Congress before, during and after negotiations. The American people would have ample time to comment as the president must wait 60 days before sending a proposed trade agreement to Congress. Any commitments not disclosed to Congress before trade agreements are introduced will have no force of law. Similarly, any provision of a trade agreement that is inconsistent with US federal or state law has no effect.
We live in a global economy and 95 percent of the world’s consumers live outside of our borders. Closing our eyes to that fact and closing our doors to trade opportunities would have severe consequences for our economy. At this moment, container ships are rolling into our ports, packed to capacity, but leaving empty. Free and fair trade will allow our farmers and manufacturers to fill those cargo ships with products bound for foreign markets and that means jobs here at home.”