CRAIG TO VOTE NO ON CAFTA
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Idaho Senator Larry Craig announced today that he will vote no on CAFTA. The Senate is expected to vote later this evening on the Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA).
Craig declared, “I supported granting the President ‘fast-track’ authority in 2002. Since then I have voted for two of the three trade agreements that have come before the Senate. I worked diligently with the Administration as they negotiated CAFTA in order to ensure it will protect U.S. interests while expanding our opportunities for trade.
“While there are many positives in CAFTA, we should not trade one aspect of our economy for another. We ought not pick winners and losers, and CAFTA does. This agreement sacrifices our sugar industry – a vital component of rural, southern Idaho.Idaho’s sugar industry employs 7,000 to 8,000 people and generates nearly $800 million in annual economic activity.
“In addition, I have never seen a trade agreement that doesn’t give some of our sovereignty to another country. While I appreciate the last-minute effort the Administration spearheaded to address the concerns of the sugar industry, it was too late. I had hoped the Administration could have withdrawn and started over on CAFTA. That is not an option I have been given, so I will have to vote against CAFTA.”