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Which Members Are Most Pro-Trade, According to NFTC Which Members Are Most Pro-Trade, According to NFTC

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Which Members Are Most Pro-Trade, According to NFTC

The 112th Congress is quite trade friendly, says National Foreign Trade Council president Bill Reinsch upon the release of the group's congressional report card today.

The NFTC scored senators and representatives on eight trade votes.

"Our members like to see this before the election because they hand it over to their PAC people if they have PACs, and they like to know who's been supportive and who has not," Reinsch said.

NFTC, which has spent $198,000 this year so far on lobbying, doesn't have a PAC of its own.

Here's the breakdown:

  • In the Senate, 37 Republicans and 27 Democrats and one Independent had positive scores (A or B). Three Democrats and one Independent received a D.
  • In the House, 138 Republicans and 48 Democrats had positive scores (A or B). On the flip side, 24 Democrats and four Republicans had negative scores (D or F).
  • House leadership in both parties had positive scores, except for House Republican Chair Jeb Hensarling of Texas, who scored a C.
The eight votes included free trade agreements with Colombia, Korea and Panama, as well as some Senate votes on the country's sugar program and a House vote on Iran sanctions (which passed by voice vote in the Senate).

But some notable votes haven't taken place, such as the approving permanent normal trade relations with Russia, which hasn't been brought to the floor by the Republican leadership.

Even still, Reinsch calls this "a pretty pro-trade Congress."

"It's been a good year for trade. They passed a lot of stuff on voice vote, which is good. That suggests a lack of dissent," he said.

As far as Russia PNTR, Reinsch said the group is optimistic that it'll come up in the lame duck. And if not, they will be making plenty of noise about it.

The Senators with the highest grades include: John Boozman, R-Ark.; Dan Coats, R-Ind.; Dean Heller, R-Nev.; and Richard Lugar, R-Ind. Senators with the lowest scores are John Rockefeller, D-W.Va., and Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.

The House members with the highest scores are: Bob Dold, R-Ill.; Doc Hastings, R-Wash., Jared Polis, D-Colo.; and Harold Rogers, R-Ky. The lowest-scoring House members are Joe Donnelly, D-Mass., Bob Filner, D-Calif., and Walter Jones, R-N.C.

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