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Reply #11: He does believe in it. [View All]

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DjTj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-17-04 08:35 PM
Response to Reply #7
11. He does believe in it.
He voted against fast-track while the DLC voted for it.

He also had very hard time with the China PNTR vote:

But I am mindful that globalization and this bill in particular may have a real downside. As a Senator from North Carolina, I am well-positioned to see both the enormous benefits and the large costs of this measure.

Textile and apparel workers, many of whom live in North Carolina, face real challenges as a result of this measure. While in almost every respect the agreement with China benefits our country, textiles is the major exception. As a result of joining WTO, quotas on Chinese textiles and apparel will be eliminated in 2005. As a result, Chinese apparel will flow into the United States. By and large, the Chinese imports will likely displace imports from other countries. However, there is no doubt that an additional burden will be placed on the textile industry. To be sure, the industry can try to protect itself through the anti-surge mechanism put in place by this legislation. Yet it does us no good to pretend that these remedies are perfect and that people will not be hurt. I know that textile workers will work their hearts out competing with the Chinese. I know these people; I grew up with them. When I was in college, I worked a summer job in a textile mill. My father spent his life working in mills. The impact of PNTR on them is personal to me. Dealing with the impact of this bill on them will always be a top priority for me. And I will fight throughout my career to protect them.

Mr. President, China's entry into the World Trade Organization and its attainment of permanent normal trade relations with America is not without its risks. No one can predict with certainty that China will live up to its commitments. I vote for this bill because I believe that we must turn our face toward the future. But we must be mindful of the risks. So I warn that I will monitor China's compliance with its agreements like a hawk. If they renege, I will lead the charge to force them to live up to their obligations.

But to vote against this measure--to deny PNTR--not only fails to accomplish anything productive but also denies us enormous opportunities. We cannot hide our heads in the sand. China will join the WTO. The Senate has no impact on that decision. The only question we face is whether the U.S. will grant China permanent normal trade relations or whether it will fall out of compliance with its WTO obligations. If we fall out of compliance, the U.S. will be denied the Chinese tariff reductions and rule changes, while every other country in the world takes advantage of the Chinese concessions. We must decide whether the U.S. will be able to compete with other countries--Germany, France, Japan--as they enter the Chinese market. American companies and workers deserve the right to enter those markets. On balance, I believe that China's admission into the World Trade Organization and its attainment of permanent normal trading relations is for the good.

And so I vote for this legislation, mindful of the risks, prepared to watch the results carefully and optimistic about the future.
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