Friday, July 14, 2006

Robin Hayes, Stand up for the 8th District

Robin Hayes will have another opportunity to stand up for the people who live in the 8th Congressional District when a free trade agreement with Oman is considered by the House of Representatives next week. Will Hayes stand against his party in order to protect the remaining textile firms and thousands of workers who live in his district or will he cut and run from his responsibility to the working people who are the backbone of this community?

Today marks the one year anniversary of Robin Hayes' rhetoric surrounding his well-known lie. There are two statements recorded in various publications that Hayes was quoted saying on July 14, 2005.

From the AP Congressman Hayes says:
"Every time I drive through Kannapolis and I see those empty plants I know there is no way I could vote for CAFTA."
From The Raleigh News & Observer Hayes prooves he clearly understands the harm free trade agreements do to his district by referring to NAFTA:
"What does CAFTA sound like? NAFTA.... It's not in the best interests of a core constituency I represent."
Robin Hayes hasn't done much more than name a few post offices after people in his district. He's consistently voted against the workers in the 8th CD and he's been strangely silent on the upcoming discussion and vote about the trade agreement with Oman.

Larry Kissell has this to say about the vote last year,
Today marks the one year anniversary of Robin Hayes' pledge to vote against CAFTA. A pledge he quickly flip-flopped on after the President asked him to change his vote. Robin Hayes folded under pressure from the President and we're paying the price back here in North Carolina. Hayes claims the President gave him concessions to help our local manufacturing and textile businesses, but the only concessions I'm seeing in the 8th district are the ones families make as they work to hold on to their homes and businesses in this tough economic time .
Will Republican leadership try to barter more empty consessions for Robin Hayes' vote? They've yet to follow through substantively on previous consessions or promises, so don't hold your breath if anything new is announced.

3 Comments:

Blogger Justin Thibault said...

If I'm not mistaken - this election will be the anachronistic debate against free trade to "protect jobs". Quite frankly, the government cannot save jobs which are out of line with the global economy - it can only delay the inevitable.

So, in honor of this sprited debate that you've cultivated on this blog (good job on that, by the way) - I've published a post on my blog this morning in response to your defense of trade isolationism.

Enjoy!

8:52 AM, July 15, 2006  
Blogger B. Muse said...

I don't know...I'm thinking this election is going to be about hypocrisy and lies.

I checked out your post and left a comment. I kept it clean. :)

9:55 AM, July 15, 2006  
Blogger Justin Thibault said...

Here's my response to your response you left on my blog - thanks for stopping by.

You and I probably will never see eye to eye on what you consider free trade. I will always disagree with you on how we advance our society. I will never think it is OK to abandon the workers who built this community. I will never think that it is OK to crawl over their backs to grab at that next opportunity, treating them as if they are disposable. There is a right way and a wrong way to advance or society. I simply think you are going about it the wrong way.

I don't believe in "throwing people away". Far from it, I believe in leveling with people that their jobs are contingent on market forces. Protectionist trade policies will lose jobs. The only reason people believe this myth is that, while a worker's skills follow them from job to job - their union membership often does not. Perpetuating the myth that we can keep people peforming the same work that can be completed elsewhere for the fraction of the cost is nothing short of a lie.

The reason much of the manufacturing came to "this community" in the first place was for cheap labor (in comparison to the Northeast and Midwest). History is merely repeating itself.

I think folks in public life should treat citizens like adults and quit repeating this fairy tale that tariffs and sactions can shield them from market forces. This becomes less and less true as supply chain efficencies increase and data communication becomes cheaper and faster.

This isn't a Republican issue - it's a harsh reality. Read Thomas Friedman's The World Is Flat. I don't believe that we need to keep people in whatever job their in now. We need to make learning a life-long thing. We need to make it easier for people to keep their benefits and for companies to provide them. And we need to open up markets to American goods and services.

I'm looking for solutions; and it doesn't look like the netroots crowd or your candidate is offering anything up but empty rhetoric.

12:23 PM, July 15, 2006  

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