Thursday, February 5, 2009

Update: “Buy American” Could Buy Trouble

Yielding to pressure from President Obama, Senate Democrats last night
softened the Buy American requirements in the economic stimulus package in
an attempt not to scuttle U.S. global trade relations.

The Senate approved an amendment by voice vote Wednesday night that states the Buy American provisions be "applied in a manner consistent with U.S. obligations under international agreements." Reportedly, the President's former White House rival Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) was a key figure behind an from the bill completely. McCain rightly calls the Buy American proposal (with or without the modification) dangerous, and one that "echoes of the disastrous Smoot-Hawley tariff act," the 1930s trade legislation blamed for prolonging the Great Depression. "It sends a message to the world that the United States is going back to protectionism," McCain added. McCain's amendment failed 65-31. But, like so much of the pending stimulus package, the more time that passes, the more vulnerable it becomes to thoughtful consideration about its lasting effects.

Submitted by ASO member: John C. Kalitka


Larry said...

I enjoyed both of these entries, and I agree. The more this bill sits, the more things people will find that they don't like about it. And, to be perfectly honest, I think a thorough review is a good check that may save us from spending insane amounts of money on efforts that will not stimulate the economy! Unfortunately, President Obama doesn't see it this way, as he has insisted that waiting any longer will guarantee failure (See today's longest lasting headline from Drudge Report: "Pass It Now or We May Never Recover"). Sounds like a catch 22 to me...

Jeff said...

Though it is true that the longer this bill sits the more people will realize they don't like it and in the long run that may save us from spending an insane amount of money...but what I can't help but wonder is that in this "time of change" why is it that congress can't put down the swords and shields of partisanship and pass a bill that actually helps those of us who are suffering in this country. I don’t think it would be a stretch to assume that you would be hard pressed to find a member of congress that has a house they can’t pay for or a sick child they have no health care for…or for that matter ANY concern that they may get laid off. My suggestion to those who were elected by us to govern this fine country would be to do just that! I can’t speak to how much is too much or how little is not enough, but what I do know is that as those in Washington stand on their soapboxes Americans are suffering, Americans are without jobs, Americans are without health care and something needs to be done.

Anonymous said...

Wathcing Obama's press conference today...There is a clear divide as we see politicals for the Cabinet positions and business owners are left on the fringe as advisors. Seems like the ones who truly create our economy are left on the fringe while the same old bureaucrats are pulling the triggers.

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