(en) Fast Track URGENT ALERT!!!

Shawn Ewald (shawn@wilshire.net)
Tue, 4 Nov 1997 22:17:36 -0700

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------- Forwarded Message Follows ------- Date: Tue, 4 Nov 1997 20:11:24 -0800 (PST) To: Campaign for Labor Rights E-mail list <clr@igc.org> From: Mike Rhodes <clr2@igc.apc.org> Subject: Fast Track URGENT ALERT!!!

Labor Alerts/Labor News a service of Campaign for Labor Rights 1247 "E" Street SE, Washington, DC 20003 <clr@igc.apc.org> (541) 344-5410 http://www.compugraph.com/clr

[Thanks to Juliette Beck, who sent this alert to us.]

The Fast Track vote has been scheduled for this Friday - the next few days are critical to the fate of workers, communities and the environment everywhere.

Please call your Congressional Representatives right now and tell them to VOTE NO ON FAST TRACK!!!! 1-800-297-3288

This Action Alert includes: Fast Track Fact Sheet Talking Points Sample letter to Member of Congress Suggestions for further action:

Derail the Fast Track to Economic Disaster

On Friday, Nov. 7, the House of Representatives will vote on giving President Clinton "Fast Track" negotiating authority. The purpose of Fast Track is to limit debate and restrict Congress' ability (our ability) to influence trade and investment deals. Under Fast Track rule, Congress can only vote yes or no, with no amendments, on agreements negotiated by the President and hundreds of business advisors. Fast Track authority was first granted to President Nixon in 1974, but has only been used five times to pass the most undemocratic and controversial trade agreements, such as NAFTA.

The Fast Track bill that your Representative will vote on was drafted mainly by Republican Ron Archer. It is far worse than any previous Fast Track. The Republican Fast Track bill strengthens business rights, such as patents, while prohibiting the President from addressing enforceable labor and environmental protections in future trade deals for the next eight years. Under this retrograde proposal, the President wouldn't even be able to negotiate NAFTA-like labor and environmental side agreements.

This unprecedented Fast Track bill would automatically authorize the President to begin negotiating NAFTA expansion, starting with Chile. Despite demands from GOP and Democratic members, the bill does not prevent the new and extreme Multilateral Agreement on Investment from being included under Fast Track.

Main Talking Points

1. Fast Track is undemocratic; it's purpose it is to limit debate and limit Congress' ability (our ability) to influence and amend bad trade deals.

2. This Fast Track proposal prohibits environmental, labor, human rights, food safety, drug trafficking and religious freedom provisions from being included in future trade and investment agreements for the next eight years.

3. We want Fair Trade, which benefits people and the environment for all countries involved, not Free Trade.

4. Please Oppose Fast Track. Sample Letter to Congressperson on the Current Fast Track Bill



The Fast Track bill drafted by the House Way and Means Committee (Archer bill) is an affront to our goals of protecting and promoting labor standards, environmental safeguards, safe food, drug-free communities, human rights and religious freedoms. The Archer bill establishes new restrictions that have never before existed on a president's ability to include environmental or labor issues in trade policy.

I hope that you too recognize the contradiction of promoting these goals at home and abroad with the proposed Fast Track proposal, and will stand with the majority of Democrats and the American public to oppose it. The President will surely be directing trade negotiations in the wrong way with this Fast Track.

Please inform me of your position. Thank you for your consideration.


Suggestions for further action:

Submit op-eds and letters to the editor literally everywhere, TODAY.

Jam the radio talk-show airwaves in your community to educate and alert listeners about this urgent opportunity to make a difference. If you need to know what stations are best to call (most watts, most listeners, sympathetic hosts), contact Chris McGinn (cmcginn@citizen.org).

Organize many, many calls to each and every Democratic member of your delegation (with particular emphasis, obviously, on undecided members), to both District and DC offices. Be sure to follow up with activists to find out the reactions they're getting from members and staff.

Circulate this Action Alert widely among all grassroots networks to which you have access.

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