TIME TO KICK-OFF CITIZENS CAMPAIGN TO STOP FAST TRACK
The House GOP has filed their anti-environment, anti-labor, pro-corporate "Fast Track" legislation to give President George Bush a complete free hand in writing trade agreements on behalf of the U.S, including the proposed
Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) to extend NAFTA throughout the hemisphere. If you have confidence that George Bush will protect the values you care about in the rules he writes for the global economy, then you shouldn't worry about Fast Track.
If you have doubts about where George W. is headed, however, be encouraged that the actual decision about whether to give this authority to the White House will be made by the Members of Congress. With a strong enough voice opposing Fast Track, we can defeat Fast Track as we did in 1997 and 1998. Such a defeat would also slow down, if not stop, the FTAA.
The first time that the Members of Congress from our region will be home since the Fast Track bill was filed will be their July 4th recess, which extends from June 29 through July 9. This is an excellent opportunity to
start the drumbeat of public concern that can convince the Congressional delegation from the region to vote against Fast Track/FTAA.
For that reason, activists meeting at Evergreen State University in Olympia a week ago proposed that Monday, July 2nd (two weeks from today) be the "official" kick-off of a regional citizens campaign against Fast Track and the FTAA.
At a minimum, we want to generate hundreds of phone calls into the District officers of each Member of Congress from the region. Calling their district office when they are home is a great way of getting the Members' attention.
Finally, please consider what other activities on July 2nd might be helpful in raising visibility for of the FTAA and Fast Track. These might include banner hangs, public education events, street theater, a meeting with your
Member of Congress, or other appropriate ways in which to communicate that citizens in your community aren't going to sit idly by while the Congress decides whether to trust George Bush to do the right thing on global trade.
Representatives and their phone numbers:
Jay Inslee: 425-640-0233
Brain Baird: 360-695-6292
Adam Smith: 888-764-8409
Rick Larsen: 425-252-3188
Jim McDermott: 206-553-7170
Norm Dicks: 800-947-6676
Jim Dunn: 360-786-7976
Doc Hastings: 509-452-3243
Darlene Hooley: 503-588-9100
Earl Blumenauer: 503-231-2300
David Wu: 503-326-2901
Greg Walden: 541-776-4646
If you don't know who your Representative is, find out at: http://www.house.gov/house/MemberWWW.html