Thursday, May 12, 2011

Senator says jobs and safety should come before Mexican trucks

We thank Sen. Jay Rockefeller, a West Virginia Democrat, for saying something today that should be painfully obvious.

Opening the border, "would endanger U.S. companies' competitiveness at a time when our Nation continues to recover from the worst economic recession since the Great Depression,"
said Rockefeller in a letter to US Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk.

Rockefeller raised the same safety issues we've been harping on all along. And he said U.S. trucking companies wouldn't benefit because they won't send drivers or cargo into such dangerous territory.

Here's Rockefeller's public statement about Mexican trucks:
Chairman John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV today announced that he is asking the Obama Administration to be sure that new regulations on trucks carrying freight from Mexico into the United States do not jeopardize safety or existing jobs in the United States.
Rockefeller argued that a proposed plan on this issue would threaten the competitiveness of U.S. trucking firms, lacks sufficient tools to accurately track the safety performance of Mexican trucks, burdens American taxpayers with the cost of safety upgrades to Mexican trucking fleets, and fails to eliminate all of Mexico’s retaliatory actions. He shared his concerns in a letter to Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk.

“The cross-border trucking program must be done in a way that does not hurt U.S. companies or make our highways less safe,” Chairman Rockefeller said. “I need assurances that this new plan will meet those criteria before I can support this initiative.”