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The 7 - Current Events & Politics - SCOTUS Likely to Let Mexican Trucks In Register and log in to post!
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Grimis
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#1 Posted on 22.4.04 0629.14
Reposted on: 22.4.11 0631.16
This is just bad news, and one of those inexplicable policies that the Bush administration is following.

* * * * * * *
Justices likely to let Mexican trucks in U.S.
Supreme Court questions environmental lawsuit that blocked NAFTA rule
By David G. Savage
Los Angeles Times

April 22, 2004

WASHINGTON - Mexican trucks and buses soon may be rolling throughout California and the Southwestern states, with the backing of President Bush and the Supreme Court.
Bush administration lawyers urged the high court yesterday to lift a court order that has barred Mexican trucks from going beyond a 20-mile border zone, and none of the justices took sharp exception during the hourlong argument.

If the Supreme Court sides with the administration, it could clear the way for thousands of Mexican trucks to deliver goods within the United States.

That prospect - one that worries environmentalists, safety advocates and U.S. truckers - has loomed since 2001 when the president announced that he planned to lift the long-standing ban on Mexican trucks to comply with the North American Free Trade Agreement, which seeks to create a free-trade zone between Canada, Mexico and the United States.

The issue has been argued for nearly a decade, and has aligned protectionist groups with health and safety organizations in a coalition that has so far succeeded in blocking the entry of the Mexican trucks, which they say could number 34,000.

An international arbitration panel had ruled in 2001 that the United States must abandon its barriers "with respect to cross-border trucking services" and passenger buses, and Bush said he intended to comply.

But before he could do so, opponents sued to block the action.

Previous opposition to the Mexican trucks has been based on safety concerns, because many of the vehicles didn't meet U.S. safety standards.

But the lawsuit before the high court focused on the environmental impact. The opponents said the older trucks and buses in use in Mexico would belch dirty air and add to the pollution problems in California, Texas and the Southwest.

They won a victory before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which blocked Bush from proceeding. Its judges posed the issue as a clash between the international treaty and U.S. environmental standards.

They said the U.S. Department of Transportation, which enforces safety standards, had failed to conduct an environmental impact study on the likely effect of the Mexican trucks.

But Bush administration lawyers called that ruling wrong during yesterday's argument. The Transportation Department enforces safety rules, not pollution standards, they said.

The agency's officials "have no authority to deny [admission of Mexican trucks] based on environmental concerns," argued Edwin Kneedler, a deputy U.S. solicitor general.

Beyond that, the president has the power to enforce treaties without seeking permission of the agencies, he added.

The justices seemed to agree. "It seems to me a very doubtful proposition" that the regulations governing the Transportation Department would stop the president from enforcing the treaty, Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist commented.

Under the free-trade treaty, "Mexicans and Americans are to be treated alike," said Justice Stephen G. Breyer. He, too, wondered how safety regulations in U.S. law gave the appeals court reason to block the flow of Mexican trucks.


(edited by Grimis on 22.4.04 0729)
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Corajudo
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#2 Posted on 22.4.04 0748.50
Reposted on: 22.4.11 0756.19
This is just bad news, and one of those inexplicable policies that the Bush administration is following.

You mean one of those inexplicable policies like obeying the terms and conditions of a treaty that the U.S. signed? One of those inexplicable policies like not reneging on international agreements made by a President with congressional approval according to the laws of the country? And, not allowing a regulatory agency to overstep its bounds and enforce regulations for which it has no jurisdiction? It looks like we'll be complying 4 years late but better late than never.

Grimis
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#3 Posted on 22.4.04 0801.25
Reposted on: 22.4.11 0803.12
    Originally posted by Corajudo
    You mean one of those inexplicable policies like obeying the terms and conditions of a treaty that the U.S. signed?
Or not removing the US from a ridiculous treaty...
DrDirt
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#4 Posted on 22.4.04 0839.29
Reposted on: 22.4.11 0841.36
    Originally posted by Grimis
      Originally posted by Corajudo
      You mean one of those inexplicable policies like obeying the terms and conditions of a treaty that the U.S. signed?
    Or not removing the US from a ridiculous treaty...


Grimis, to do otherwise is to deny their positions on trade and such. It makes me nervous due to safety concerns but we signed it.
Grimis
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#5 Posted on 22.4.04 0842.37
Reposted on: 22.4.11 0845.20
    Originally posted by DrDirt
    Grimis, to do otherwise is to deny their positions on trade and such. It makes me nervous due to safety concerns but we signed it.
That is true. And I'm a free trader to a certain extent, but NAFTA as a multilateral treaty is what gets to me. It's asinine to give Mexican commercial vehicles a pass like this, for example...

We can have free trade with Mexico and still enact certain standards. Of course, I have never been a fan of this administration's love affair with Mexico(trucks, immigration, etc).
Joe E. Nitro
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#6 Posted on 22.4.04 1015.30
Reposted on: 22.4.11 1017.48
This is bad for a lot of people. Mainly the thousands of truckers that would pick those loads up at the 20 mile radius. I unload trucks for a living and these things must be barely passing inspections as it is. Bald tires, rickety machinery and this is with our US standards. I don't know if the Mexican trucks will have to at least meet these standards or not, but if no LOOK OUT!

I guess it's good for businesses and it may be good to the consumer if the savings is passed on, but to me the bad far out weighs the good here.
Jaguar
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#7 Posted on 22.4.04 1615.10
Reposted on: 22.4.11 1617.02
If the trucks that pass our borders do not meet our safety/environmental or any other standards that we impose on our own truckers than they should be turned right back around and sent back to Mexico. Having two seperate standards for two different countries is one thing, but there's no reason to set a double-standard inside our own country.

-Jag
Corajudo
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#8 Posted on 22.4.04 2251.32
Reposted on: 22.4.11 2255.13
It's asinine to give Mexican commercial vehicles a pass like this, for example...

That is one of the problems--they were trying to impose a different standard on Mexican trucks than on U.S. trucks. Furthermore, why would the Transportation Dept. issue environmental standards? That is outside both their jurisdiction and their area of expertise.

We can have free trade with Mexico and still enact certain standards.

The problem is that when we have different standards for Mexican goods (or trucks) than we do for our own, then it is not free trade. It's like when we enact 'free' trade with Central or South American countries but keep subsidizing our farmers. Or, when we have 'free' trade with Australia but not on certain, mostly agricultural, goods (and we keep subsidizing our farmers). These types of agreements aren't free trade.
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