Last-minute push for Colombia trade pact

Major newspapers around the country including the Washington Post, the LA Times, and the Wall Street Journal are urging President-elect Barack Obama to pass the U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement in the lame duck session. The Los Angeles Times said it bluntly, “It’s time to stop playing games with a trade pact whose economic and political benefits are good for both nations.”

Some reports of the meeting between the president-elect and President Bush said that the president had pushed for the trade agreement in exchange for support of the auto loan package, but that was denied.

CEI has strongly supported the passage of this agreement based on its own merits — it provides surety for continued liberalized trade for Colombia, it opens up Colombian markets to U.S. goods without high tariffs, and it helps cement the close relationship with a Latin American ally besieged by leftist neighboring governments.