What: All Issues : Labor Rights : Preventing Workers' Rights From Being Eroded by International Trade Agreements : H.R. 2739. U.S.-Singapore Trade/Procedural Vote to Proceed to a Final Vote on a Free Trade Bill Between the U.S. and Singapore.
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H.R. 2739. U.S.-Singapore Trade/Procedural Vote to Proceed to a Final Vote on a Free Trade Bill Between the U.S. and Singapore.
house Roll Call 430     Jul 24, 2003
Y = Conservative
N = Progressive
Winning Side:
Conservative

According to House rules, legislation needs to be read three times before passage; the first reading occurs when the legislation is first introduced, the second reading occurs before House debate on the floor, and the third (and final) reading occurs at the conclusion of floor debate but before final passage of the legislation. The subject of this vote was the third reading of legislation to encourage free trade between the U.S. and Singapore. Progressives voted against the pro-forma third reading (in an effort to prevent final passage of the bill) based on their objections to the underlying legislation. In the view of Progressives, the U.S.-Singapore trade bill would exacerbate the trade deficit in the United States and thereby cause Americans to lose their jobs (a trade "deficit" in this context means that the U.S. annually pays more money for imported products-those made in other countries-than it earns in exporting U.S.-made goods to those countries). Additionally, Progressives contended that free-trade agreements (like the proposal under consideration here) encourage environmental degradation by allowing corporations unfettered access to commodities that sometimes come from previously pristine natural environments under-protected by nations' environmental laws. Despite their objections to the bill, the third reading was allowed on a 309-114 vote and the legislation was allowed to proceed in the legislative process.

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