Senate Democrats

Tanking The Economy On Purpose? Senate GOP Opposes Another Economic Priority They Used To Support

SENATE REPUBLICANS ARE BLOCKING FREE TRADE AGREEMENTS…

Senate Republicans Are Blocking Markup on Trade Agreements They Say They Want Over A Scheduling Conflict. “Senate Republicans boycotted a mock markup of three U.S. trade deals Thursday, forcing Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) to postpone action on the long-awaited agreements.  Baucus said that Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), the ranking member on Finance, informed him that no Republicans would attend the session.  ‘Instead of participating in a fair and open forum to discuss these agreements, some members of this committee chose to block the scheduled markup,’ Baucus said.  … Hatch said that if Democrats had agreed to hold the hearing at 10 a.m. on Thursday rather than 3 p.m., Republicans would have been there to participate.” [The Hill, 6/30/11]

Roll Call: Republicans Boycott Trade Mock Markup, Citing Schedule Grievance.Politics in the Senate took a turn for the absurd Thursday, as the GOP boycotted the Senate Finance Committee’s “mock markup” of trade legislation because they said it would make it difficult for them to start their July Fourth recess — which itself had been curtailed earlier in the day.” [Roll Call, 6/30/11]

Hatch Would Work To Advance Trade Deals at 10 AM, But Not At 3 PM on The Same Day. “Let’s do it in the right time. Even this morning at 10 o’clock, we would have done it.” [Hatch Remarks, 6/30/11]

 

…THAT LESS THAN A MONTH AGO THEY WERE CALLING FOR…

Senator McConnell: “We need to change course. And a good place to start is with trade.” [Floor Speech, 6/7/11]

Senator Rubio: “These agreements will be a boon to our economy” “These agreements will be a boon to our economy, create jobs for Floridians, and help solidify our alliances with these steadfast partners. The agreements with Colombia and Panama in particular will boost Florida businesses, workers and farmers whose livelihoods rely on exports to these countries.” [Rubio Press Release, 4/6/11]

Senator Cornyn: We Need FTAs to Create Jobs. “We need to pass free trade agreements that should be pending before the Senate to help create more jobs here at home by producing things here that we can then sell abroad.” [Cornyn Floor Speech, 6/23/11]

Senator Hoeven Said We Need To Work Together On Free Trade Agreements “Right Now” “We need to be working on those free-trade agreements right now, today, to approve them. I urge our leadership and the administration to work with us to get those trade agreements to the floor and get them approved as part of this comprehensive jobs plan.” [Hoeven Floor Speech, 5/27/11]

Senator Grassley: The Time To Present These Free Trade Agreements is Long Overdue.” “I’ve been a long-time supporter of free trade. Its a good thing when American businesses, manufacturers, and farmers have more market access for their products. I’ve also been a long-time supporter of the free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia, and Panama. We have had too many years of talking about being long-time supporters of these trade agreements. We have not had the opportunity to back up the talk with our votes. The time to present these free trade agreements is long overdue.” [Press Release, 5/26/11]

Senator Hatch: If we do not have an opportunity to vote on these agreements this summer, I am afraid we never will.” “Further delay imperils the recent gains made toward consideration of the pending trade agreements. If we do not have an opportunity to vote on these agreements this summer, I am afraid we never will.” [Hatch Remarks, 5/26/11]

Hatch Heralded the Economic Impact Of FTAs. “With a combined economic impact of over $12 billion, the trio of trade pacts will boost export opportunities for American-made products and spur much-need job creation for American workers.” [Hatch Press Release, 5/4/11]

 

…THIS IS BECOMING A PATTERN.

Boehner: Payroll Tax A “Sugar High” “House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, called proposals to extend or expand the payroll tax cut ‘another little short-term gimmick.’ House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., likened the idea to a ‘sugar high.’” [AP, 6/23/11]

Hatch: Don’t Need Another “Stimulus Gimmick” “Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, co-sponsored a temporary payroll tax holiday for companies that hired unemployed workers last year. However, he said he would have to see convincing evidence that it helped create jobs before supporting a new one. ‘We need to make sure the payroll tax cut is not just some other stimulus gimmick,’ he said in an interview.” [AP, 6/23/11]

Senator Kyl Flip Flopped On Pay Roll Taxes. According to Talking Points Memo, Kyl said “So, the answer to your question is yes it might help business, but I’m not sure that its overall impact might not be as positive as we think given the pressures on all the other programs that rely on general revenues.” [TPM,  6/29/11]

Alexander Now Opposes Payroll Tax Cuts. According to The Hill, Alexander said “‘We don’t need short term gestures, we need long term strategies,’ said Alexander.” [The Hill, 6/15/11]

 

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