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Port Deal's Political Fallout Not Over

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cal04 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:25 PM
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Port Deal's Political Fallout Not Over
House GOP Drafting Bill to Require Hill Oversight of Foreign Acquisitions
House Republican leaders will unveil legislation as soon as next week demanding a congressional role in reviewing the acquisition of U.S. businesses by foreign buyers, suggesting that the controversy over a now-abandoned Dubai port deal will continue to roil congressional relations with the Bush administration.

House Majority Whip Roy Blunt is drafting a bill to require congressional oversight as the administration reviews such foreign acquisitions, a role Congress has not played since the Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States (CFIUS) was created three decades ago. A day after United Arab Emirates-based Dubai Ports World abandoned its bid to control terminal operations at six major U.S. seaports, lawmakers and President Bush made it clear that the issue was not going away. In remarks to newspaper editors, Bush said he is "concerned about a broader message this issue could send to our friends and allies around the world, particularly in the Middle East."

U.S. Trade Representative Rob Portman announced that trade talks between the United States and the UAE, set to begin Monday, will be postponed. Spokeswoman Neena Moorjani said both sides need more time to prepare.
Flush from what they see as a victory, members of Congress appear determined to insert themselves into matters of national security that they had previously left exclusively to the president. But their aggressive response has left administration officials -- and even some colleagues -- concerned that the longer the controversy drags out, the more likely it will alienate foreign allies, dampen investment in the United States and even slow the economy.

Officials from both parties warned that if the statement's intent proves to be less than full divestiture, Congress will move swiftly to kill the deal. "If nothing else, the company will ignite a thermonuclear explosion for itself and the emirate if it falls short of a sale," warned one Republican Senate aide.
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alfredo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 11:34 PM
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1. Now congress can shake down foreign companies just like
they do American companies. No money for me, no vote for your acquisition.
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