President Bush on Wednesday promised to protect U.S. workers and the environment from negative effects of a free trade agreement with Mexico.
The president told members of Congress in a written statement that he will work with them "to ensure a worker adjustment program that is adequately funded and that provides effective services to workers who may lose their jobs as a result of an agreement with Mexico."The program's price tag and details would be worked out with Congress when the trade negotiations are finished, officials said. It would provide dislocated workers "with comprehensive services in a timely fashion," according to a White House summary of Bush's proposals obtained by The Associated Press.
Bush also promised to ensure in negotiations with Mexico "that our right to safeguard the environment is preserved."
The document said Mexico has an environmental law of 1988 that "is a solid foundation for tackling its enviornmental problems," and that "enforcement has in the past been a key problem, but Mexico's record has been improving dramatically."