President Bush signed an agreement creating a “permanent body” that commits the U.S. to “deeper transatlantic economic integration,” without ratification by the Senate as a treaty or passage by Congress as a law.
The “Transatlantic Economic Integration” between the U.S. and the European Union was signed April 30 at the White House by Bush, German Chancellor Angela Merkel – the current president of the European Council – and European Commission President Jos? Manuel Barroso.
The document acknowledges “the transatlantic economy remains at the forefront of globalization,” arguing that the U.S. and the European Union “seek to strengthen transatlantic economic integration.”
The agreement established a new Transatlantic Economic Council to be chaired on the U.S. side by a cabinet-level officer in the White House and on the EU side by a member of the European Commission.
The current U.S. head of the new Transatlantic Economic Council is Allan Hubbard, assistant to the president for Economic Policy and director of the National Economic Council.
The current EU head of the council is G?nther Verheugen, vice-President of the European Commission in charge of enterprise and industry.
The Transatlantic Economic Council was tasked with creating regulatory convergence between the U.S. and the EU on some 40 different public policy areas, including intellectual property rights, developing security standards for international trade, getting U.S. GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Practices) recognized in Europe, developing innovation and technology in health industries, implementing RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technologies, developing a science-based plan on bio-based products and establishing a “regular dialogue” to address obstacles to investment.
At a joint press conference, Bush thanked the other two leaders for signing the “trans-Atlantic economic integration plan,” commenting that, “It is a recognition that the closer that the United States and the EU become, the better off our people will be.”
Barroso said the Transatlantic Economic Council is meant to be “a permanent body, with senior people on both sides of the Atlantic.”
As WND has reported, Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez repeatedly has pushed for North American integration, much as the April 30 agreement proposes closer U.S.-EU integration.
Mexico’s ambassador to the U.N., Enrique Berruga, has called for a North American Union to be created in the next eight years.
But the Bush administration’s push for North American integration is facing increasing opposition within Congress.
WND reported Rep. Virgil Goode, R-Va., has introduced House Concurrent Resolution 40, which opposes the administration’s Security and Prosperity Partnership, blocks a NAFTA Superhighway System and expresses opposition to the U.S. entry into a North American Union with Mexico and Canada.
WND also has reported a movement led by Phyllis Schlafly of Eagle Forum has led to an increasing number of state legislatures proposing resolutions opposing a North American Union.
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