America has been slow to react as the international order is upended by revolutions in the Middle East and upheavals elsewhere in the world. As we watch passively, the world is being remade to our detriment. It’s time to re-establish America’s global leadership – not by promoting democracy in far-off lands with hostile populations, but by creating a new international alliance in which friendly nations voluntarily bind together through mutually beneficial free trade.
Toward that end, today I introduced the Economic Freedom Alliance Act in the House of Representatives. The bill would advance global free trade through four measures:
· The Transatlantic Commerce and Trade Enhancement Act would authorize the U.S. President to conduct negotiations with the European Union toward a comprehensive free trade agreement.
· The United States-Brazil Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade Act would establish a commission between the United States and Brazil to work toward dismantling mutual trade barriers, promoting commercial opportunities, and in the long-term, establishing free trade between the two nations.
· The Agriculture Trade Facilitation Act would establish U.S. negotiating objectives for removing improper sanitary and phytosanitary barriers to U.S. agricultural exports.
· The Generalized System of Preferences Improvement Act would reform the Generalized System of Preferences so that certain countries with rapidly developing economies will no longer receive trading preferences from the United States while blocking U.S. imports in their own markets. Instead, they will be encouraged to work with the United States to remove trade barriers on both sides.
Amid the burning American flags and charred U.S. embassies that dot the world landscape today, we should try a new approach. The U.S. is now negotiating a multilateral free-trade agreement with Mexico, Canada, Australia, and seven other nations through the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The Economic Freedom Alliance Act will expand this effort into the creation of a broad free-trade zone that unites us with peaceful, like-minded allies and sets clear conditions for U.S. friendship.