Sewell Chan: U.S. Plans for Trade Are Stalled (NYT, February 28):
Although the White House renegotiated a pivotal free-trade agreement with South Korea in December, scoring rare bipartisan praise, House Republican leaders have refused to allow the deal to move forward. They want the administration to make progress first on similar accords with Colombia and Panama that face stiff opposition from labor unions and liberal Democrats.
“We’ve made it clear that the time has run out on Colombia and Panama,” said Representative Kevin Brady, Republican of Texas, who leads the trade subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee. “It is time to move on them, along with Korea, in the first six months of this year.”
Mr. Brady said the three deals had to be submitted to Congress as a package. “It would do great damage to our bipartisan efforts on trade if the administration sends Korea up by itself right now,” he said.