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PRESS RELEASE


Behind the `Free Trade' Veil:
Wall Street `Democratic' Money
Is Threatening Freshman Congressmen

May 17, 2007 (EIRNS)—As opposition grows within the Democratic Party to the "free trade deal agreement" announced by the Democratic Congressional leadership May 10, Congressional sources told EIR that the anti-free-trade Democratic freshman Members of Congress are being threatened by "Democratic" Wall Street money, to support free trade, or else. Led by Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D-Ill.), a former hedge-fund executive, some party leaders are "beating up" freshman Members by threatening them that they will be denied significant contributions for re-election, if they don't back the announced free-trade "deal." Emanuel led the Democrats' fundraising arm in 2006, and is former managing director of the Wall Street investment firm Wasserstein Perella Group.

This is clearly the pawprints of the "Rohatyn factor" in the Democratic Party which Lyndon LaRouche has been warning and fighting against, in which "Democratic billionaires" led by banker Rohatyn's anti-FDR circles, and hedge funds, pour millions into corrupting Democratic candidates. All of the Democratic freshmen Congressmen and Congresswomen wrote to the party's leadership two months ago, insisting on the anti-free-trade agenda which helped them get elected. Now they are being told to back free trade deals, starting with the Peru and Panama agreements, and probably also renewed "fast-track" Presidential free-trade authority, or "lose the support of the Chamber [of Commerce]," the euphemism for the Wall Street- and Hollywood-driven big contributions.

In addition, the Congressional sources said, the Democratic caucus was "taken by surprise" by Rep. Charles Rangel's (D-N.Y.) press conference with Paulson and Schwab, announcing a "deal" between the White House and the Democrats. Unions including the AFL-CIO, the Teamsters, the United Steelworkers, and the International Association of Machinists have come out in opposition to these agreements. And within the Congress, opposition is being led by six senior Members—Tim Ryan (Oh.), Michael Michaud and Thomas Allen (Me.), Dale Kildee (Mich.), Linda Sanchez (Calif.), Phil Hare (Ill.)—who told Emanuel, "We are seeking to avoid a split in the Caucus on this issue, given the devastating effects of such splits in the past. In the early 1990s, the notorious NAFTA free-trade pact, and "fast-track" authority for more, was passed for Democratic President Bill Clinton by a majority Republican vote, with a minority of the Democratic Caucus, which split over NAFTA.

With the housing bubble, auto, and construction crashing, the time is critical for an anti-globalization policy of reindustrialization and new infrastructure public works, like LaRouche's Economic Recovery Act of 2006. But so far, the Democratic opponents of free trade have only put forward actions against China's and Japan's currency policies.