The House on Tuesday approved a resolution urging the United States to pull out of a cooperative economic, security and public health agreement with Mexico and Canada.
Rep. Stephen Sandstrom, R-Orem, said he is sponsoring HJR7 because he sees the Security and Prosperity Partnership as potentially, "wiping away our borders and becoming a common nation with a common currency" similar to the European Union.
Before Tuesday's 47-24 vote, Rep. Scott Wyatt, R-Logan, questioned what the so-called SPP really entails. He pointed to the government's Web site, spp.gov, which describes the partnership as a "dialogue" and not a signed agreement.
"I don't know what I'm asking ... because I don't know what it is," Wyatt said.
The partnership was announced in March 2005, by President Bush and the presidents of Canada and Mexico, who all said, "we must develop new avenues of cooperation that will make our open societies safer and more secure, our businesses more competitive, and our economies more resilient."
Before the vote, Rep. Sheryl Allen, R-Bountiful, had unsuccessfully sought to substitute the resolution with one that would urge an evaluation of the SPP by Congress, and request Utah's congressional delegation report to the state on the findings.
Allen said the partnership is broader than trade and should be studied further so the Legislature can better understand the scope of the issue.
"Its goals related to protection of our public health are very important," she said. "The SPP significantly has improved the cooperation between these countries in preparation for avian and pandemic influenza. ... We won't have energy security without cooperation."
Sandstrom later said issues such as avian flu can be addressed without "an agreement that could potentially merge our economies."
HJR7 now moves to the Senate.