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Hoffa Expresses Anger on Congress’ Passing of CAFTA

Source: Teamsters

Early this morning, Congress narrowly passed the job-killing trade agreement, the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA), by a vote of 217 to 215. This unfair trade deal will further spread the damage of its predecessor, the North American Free Trade Agreement—NAFTA.

“Congress had an opportunity to act on behalf of workers here in the United States and across Central America by killing CAFTA,” said Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa. “Instead, Congress voted on the side of multinational corporations that want to sell off U.S. jobs to the lowest bidder. Americans should be outraged.”

Teamster voices during the last couple of weeks have made a difference in this battle. CAFTA supporters were more than 40 votes away from passing CAFTA. Thousands of Teamsters reached out to their Senators and Representatives with phone calls, emails and letters.

CAFTA supporters prevailed only by resorting to cheap tricks, including buying off lawmakers with pork projects and threatening others with cuts in funding for roads and other infrastructure projects in a transportation bill. Many members of Congress who voted for CAFTA did so out of fear and threat of retribution, not because they believed it was good for America.

“I would like to thank those members who were true leaders in this battle, including Representatives Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Walter Jones (R-NC), for their outstanding leadership and strong determination in trying to defeat CAFTA,” President Hoffa said.

“To those Representatives who voted against this job-killing trade deal, I extend the gratitude of the 1.4 million members of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters,” Hoffa said. “To those who abandoned working families by voting for CAFTA, the Teamsters have taken notice.”


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