Categorized | Currency

Senate currency vote Tuesday. What are they thinking.


It looks like Reid will hold the vote on S. 1619 on Tuesday evening.  About 6:30p.  Things could change, but that’s current status.

Unfortunately, there’s talk of Reid holding a vote on the FTA’s Wednesday.  I don’t know his strategy in that it seems risky, from his perspective, to allow an FTA vote before the House has passed currency.  Reid supports the currency bill and opposes the FTAs.  Speaker Boehner and Majority Leader Cantor oppose the currency bill but support the FTAs.

Maybe I’m playing checkers and Reid is playing chess, but if he wants currency (and Pelosi does too), why give up the FTAs until the House passes currency?

For the record, in case you did not know, CPA supports the currency bills (S. 1619 and HR 639) while opposing the trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama.

We need a national trade strategy to produce more here and become a net exporter.  The bilateral trade agreements send us in the wrong direction… begetting net imports and net job losses.


3 Responses to “Senate currency vote Tuesday. What are they thinking.”

  1. Julian Martin says:

    Max Baucus, most of the Senate Democratic caucus and Obama’s office of USTR supports the FTA’s. His political people appear to think the messaging of FTA’s creating jobs works, despite his campaign rhetoric and the facts.

    I would not worry much about the pressure in the House. The pressure will be enormous because unlike prior years when the Republicans were in the majority, Pelosi, Hoyer, the Ways & Means Ranking Member, and the head of the campaign committee are all actively behind it. Senator Reid is handing Speaker Boehner a huge shit sandwich, which he’ll eventually have to eat.

    The bigger fight should be replacing the status-quo senior leadership at USTR for deep-sixing Obama’s mandate.

  2. Joe Hyellstrum says:

    I agree that the big problem is too many Americans accept the media ‘messaging’ (aka, ‘lies’) that the FTAs will create jobs in the USA. I also agree that the office of the USTR is another big problem — especially isolation of that office from popular pressure although not from covert political influence. I guess that’s strange — to lament the weakness of popular pressure — but that’s really what this comes to. We must choose between democracy, with all its risks, and the rule of global corporatism, which is as risk-prone as ever democracy was or could be.

    I am not so sure about Julian Martin’s analysis that seems to premise that a currency bill is going to pass in the House. Yes, “a” currency bill is likely this year. However, we need to focus on “THE currency bill” (S. 1619, H.R. 639). Multinationalist-corporatist insiders are planning to pass “a” currency bill that will be a gutless wonder after it gets out of committee later this year.

    There will be no shit sandwich for Boehner or presidential candidates, or for Obama or anyone else, (except the working people of America), if the discussion goes from “Shouldn’t something be done?” to “Something is being done, so what’s your problem?”

    I don’t know why Senator Reid has chosen not to hold up the vote on the FTAs, making that dependent on a vote on the currency bill in the House, but I suspect it’s something to do with the usual “long-standing traditions” for how the House and the Senate interrelate. Senator Reid has successfully made a major move in establishing a precedent that prevents using amendments (unrelated to a bill) as a dilatory tactic in the Senate, and I think he probably feels that he has done what he can for fair trade. Reid has kept his promise to clear the path for votes on the FTAs, TAA and S. 1619.

    Now it’s up to the House … and to the people. We (the People) have to convince members of the House (especially Republicans) that gutless toothless substitutes will not be enough to prevent a popular rejection of House members who vote along with Boehner on the FTAs.

    As for Democrats in the House, we have to convince them that we will be behind them in 2012 if and only if they stand strong for fair trade, even if that includes voting against a watered-down currency bill. We have to insist on a vote on HR 639 as it exists now or on a vote on S. 1619 in the House.

    There’s no point in blaming Reid for pushing everything through at this time, while there is tremendous momentum building. Reid doesn’t even run the Senate the way Boehner has been able, so far, to run the House. If it comes down to that Boehner is able to block a vote on real trade reform, we have to hang the phoney trade reform legislation around his neck like the albatross tied around the neck of the Ancient Mariner. We have to expose Boehner for what he is — a hireling of the People’s Republic of China.

    With Boehner running the House and Obama in the White House, all we can do is keep fighting. The bigger fight will be in 2012, and Obama cannot be let off the hook because he somehow lost control of his own USTR, anymore than Boehner can be let off the hook.

  3. John Steinsvold says:

    An Alternative to Capitalism (if the people knew about it, they would demand it)

    Several decades ago, Margaret Thatcher claimed: “There is no alternative”. She was referring to capitalism. Today, this negative attitude still persists.

    I would like to offer an alternative to capitalism for the American people to consider. Please click on the following link. It will take you to an essay titled: “Home of the Brave?” which was published by the Athenaeum Library of Philosophy:

    John Steinsvold

    Perhaps in time the so-called dark ages will be thought of as including our own.
    -Georg C. Lichtenberg


Sign up for daily updates