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Roskam To President Obama: Work With Us To Increase Export Of American Made Goods And Services

Press Release

Location: Washington, DC

Roskam To President Obama: Work With Us To Increase Export Of American Made Goods And Services

Today, at the House GOP retreat, Ways and Means Committee Member Peter Roskam asked President Obama to work with Republicans to sign pending Free Trade Agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea.

According to the President's own estimates, increasing US exports by just 1 percent -- something the pending trade agreements would accomplish -- could create as many as 250,000 jobs for American workers.

Roskam: Are You Willing to Work With Us On No Cost Job Creation?

Rep. Peter Roskam: "So here's the question, moving forward, and I think all of us want to hit the reset button on 2009, how do we move forward, and on the job creation piece in particular, you mentioned Columbia, you mentioned Panama, you mentioned South Korea. Are you willing to work with us, for example, to make sure those Free Trade Agreements get called? That's no cost job creation, and ultimately, as you're interacting with world leaders, that's got to put more arrows in your quiver and it's a very powerful tool for us. But the obstacle is, frankly, the politics within the Democratic caucus."

President Obama: Democrat Internal Politics Holding Back Trade

President Obama: "On the specific issue of trade, you're right, there are conflicts within, and fissures within the Democratic party…"
Obama Acknowledges the Value of Having Passed Free Trade Earlier

President Obama: "You are absolutely right though, Peter, when you say that South Korea is a great ally of ours. When I visited there, there is no country that is more committed to friendship on a whole range of fronts, than South Korea. What is also true is that the European Union is about to sign a trade agreement with South Korea. Which means right at the moment when they start opening up their markets, the Europeans might get in there before we do. So we've got to make sure that we seize these opportunities. I will be talking more about trade this year."

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