US - Peru Free Trade Agreement Update

Following the recent passage of the US - Peru Free Trade Agreement, CRLN's Public Policy Coordinator, Danielle Wegman, wrote to CRLN members and friends. 

Dear CRLN Members and Friends:

Thank you for calling Illinois Senators Durbin and Obama and asking them to vote NO to the U.S.-Peru Free Trade Agreement.  Despite our efforts, this agreement passed the Senate yesterday 77-18.  It passed the House on November 8th by 285-132, with the majority of Democrats voting NO.

Unfortunately, Senator Durbin decided at the last minute to vote for and support the agreement. Senator Obama, being on the campaign trail, was not present to vote, even though he publicly supports this agreement based on important but minor improvements in the agreement on the environmental and labor chapters.   

According to one of CRLN's partner organizations in Washington DC , the Center for International Policy (CIP), "It's important to reject the erroneous and harmful free-trade model and demand a truly new trade policy for the nation.  One thing we learned from the Peru vote is that accepting small modifications in the model allows the policy to proceed unquestioned. NAFTA has shown that the consequences are devastating to workers in developing countries and in the United States . Only a coherent and principled stand against all NAFTA-style Free Trade Agreements and a demand to seriously evaluate and revamp international trade policy can bring about changes that promote development and labor rights for all. We call on the democratic leadership must take a more unified and principled stand against these FTAs and have the courage to expose the false argument that a vote against the NAFTA-model FTA is a vote against international trade in general."

Please watch for more CRLN Action Alerts as Congress considers pending free trade agreements with Colombia and Panama . CRLN urges our Illinois Senators and Representatives to reject these agreements and invites you to join us in signing on to a Moratorium on the pending Free Trade Agreements. To sign on, click here.


Danielle E. Wegman, Public Policy Coordinator
Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America (CRLN)
4750 N Sheridan Rd, Ste 429, Chicago IL 60640
Tel: 773/293-2964, Fax: 773/293-3677