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Guide U.S.-EU Trade and Economic Relations: Key Policy Issues for the 112th Congress

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He stated: My Administration will work to advance these principles and work with Congress to put them into law. With this Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights, we offer to the world a dynamic model of how to offer strong privacy protection and enable ongoing innovation in new information technologies.

Moreover, Secretary of State John Kerry has repeatedly stated his support for new laws to protect privacy. Just two years ago, then Senator Kerry and Senator McCain introduced the Commercial Privacy Bill of Rights Act of , which would impose new rules on companies that gather personal data, including offering people access to data about them, or the ability to block the information from being used or distributed.

Companies would have to seek permission before collecting and sharing sensitive religious, medical and financial data with outside entities. EPIC believes that trade agreements are not the appropriate mechanism for determining international privacy standards, and thus the TTIP should exclude privacy and data protection entirely. Finally, draft texts should be made publicly available, and a mechanism should be created to ensure equal participation by consumer groups, privacy groups, and other members of civil society.

Betts, Dr. Peter Feaver and Dr. Anne-Marie Slaughter - with diverse backgrounds and perspectives to advance a common mission of promoting informed debate about America's role in the world and the best ways to fulfill it.

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The White House, May 23, , 31 pages. Pew Research Center. Overview from the Rise of Asian Americans. Pew Research Center, June 19, , 17 pages. Pew Research Center's new report paints a comprehensive portrait of Asian Americans, examining their demographic characteristics, social and family values, education, economic circumstances and more. The report also explores six subgroups by country of origin. Rainie, Lee.

Social Media and the U. Presidential Elections. Department of State, June 20, , 7 pages. So it's 66 percent of Internet users use Facebook and social networking sites, 15 percent use Twitter. So there's a difference and a gap; it's not everyone is using Twitter.

And some American pundits have talked about this election being the Twitter election. This is a special way now that the political community is organizing itself and interacting with voters. There are a small number of people using Twitter; it's not everyone. And Twitter is important for campaigns to communicate with journalists, with other elites, to share their message and perhaps mobilize other people.

FOCUS July 2012

But it is not all of the population who are doing it. Elections: Electoral College. Department of State, June 23, , 2 pages.

U.S. International Trade

But only men and women will elect the next president of the United States, and those elections will take place in 50 state capitals and in Washington, D. Archick, Kristin.

In addition, given the European Parliament's growing influence in many of these policy areas, Members of Congress may be able to help shape Parliament's views and responses through ongoing contacts and the existing Transatlantic Legislators' Dialogue TLD. This report examines the evolution of U.

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Economic Stimulus for Both Sides of the Atlantic - Area Development

Kendall, Alexandra E. It concludes with a brief description of some of the major issues that might be considered by the th Congress in its response to the disease.


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The United States, concerned about Chinese flouting of international norms in the Asia-Pacific region, has argued that all countries in the region should embrace UNCLOS, which affirms freedom of navigation and lays out mechanisms for the peaceful resolution of maritime disputes. Yet this advocacy has been made somewhat self-consciously, because the United States itself has never ratified the convention. These concerns were resolved through a renegotiation of the convention, allowing President Bill Clinton to sign the treaty. But opposition remains on the conservative wing of the Republican Party, where extreme scepticism towards any international organisation seems to animate suspicions that the treaty will encroach to an unacceptable degree on US sovereignty.

Yet, as the end of the session approached, a right wing political action committee began pressuring moderate Republican senators who had not yet declared their opposition. Under pressure, Senators Rob Portman and Kelly Ayotte, both known to be champions of international engagement, became the 33rd and 34th senators to declare their opposition. In a less partisan atmosphere, moderate Republicans would have been free to vote for the treaty.

Moreover, if more leaders in the Senate had experience with Asia-Pacific issues, McCain would have likely been joined by other senior members of his party in seeking to convince fellow members of his caucus to join him in supporting UNCLOS. It is difficult for the United States to advocate for the liberal international order, and to pressure rising powers like China to accept and obey international law, when the US Senate rejects the concept outright. One potential response to the argument that congressional dysfunction has become an obstacle to deeper US engagement in the Asia Pacific was the recent passage of the Trade Promotion Authority TPA , which gives the president the right to submit a trade agreement like the TPP for an up-or-down vote.

But, in fact, the very tight vote in favour of TPA underlined many of the problems referred to above. Among policymakers in the Obama administration and in the foreign policy community of both parties in Washington, the TPP is seen as the linchpin of the rebalance strategy. On the Hill, however, it is seen very differently. That would put our workers and our businesses at a disadvantage.


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Why would we let that happen? We should write those rules. We should level the playing field. The leadership of both the Senate and House trade committees pushed for passage of the measure, and the measure eventually passed with support from Republicans and moderate Democrats. But the debate in Congress focused on issues such as tariffs, labour protections, and the perception that the TPP would be a handout to big business.

Where are EU-U.S. relations headed?

In an earlier era, members who otherwise nursed lingering concerns about the specific costs of free trade could be convinced by colleagues concerned about geopolitical issues in East Asia to support agreements that were in the broader national interest. While few members of Congress are interested in Asia-Pacific policy, there are a number of members, particularly in the House, who are interested in specific countries or issues in the Asia Pacific.

Their interest is often driven by a large immigrant or ethnic population in their district, or personal background with an issue. These drivers are not unique to the Asia-Pacific region. In the absence of concern for the broader regional picture, however, there is the risk that where members of Congress develop or show an interest in the Asia Pacific, it will be a narrow interest. For example, the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Ed Royce, represents a large number of ethnic Korean constituents in his southern California district.

Other members have a long history of advocacy on a particular issue, and view the region through the prism of that issue. This is particularly true of human rights advocates on the Hill, many of whom question engagement with any country in the region with a record of human rights abuses, and discount efforts by US officials to work to improve the human rights records of all Asian countries as part of a broader regional strategy. For example, in , 70 per cent of the hearings concerning the Asia Pacific held by the House Foreign Affairs Committee and its subcommittees focused on issues of human rights and democracy.

Vladimir Putin’s Fourth Vector

Only 9 per cent of hearings on the Middle East and 14 per cent of the hearings on Europe focused on human rights and democracy. Advocacy for democracy, human rights, and fair labour practices is a long-time feature of US foreign policy, and there is no suggestion here that it should not be. But members of Congress often seem to neglect the need to incorporate that advocacy into a broader approach that recognises other US interests in the region, if for no other reason than such an approach is required to make progress on any issue at all, including human rights.

This has been less of a problem in the Senate, where, for example, Senator McCain has used his considerable credibility, as a victim of Vietnamese torture when he was a prisoner of war, to argue for an approach that deepens engagement with Hanoi while still advancing US advocacy for human rights there. But the loss of other senior leaders who can frame an issue more strategically, and the relative lack of interest in the broader region, allow individual members to define the US relationship with a particular country through the prism of a single issue. This is clearly unhelpful in the conduct of diplomacy in the region.

The Armed Services committees, primarily concerned with US—China competition when it comes to the Asia Pacific, often see the rest of the region in the context of that competition. The example of US relations with Myanmar is instructive. But they also came at a time of increased concern that the military, dissatisfied with the prospect of instability in Myanmar, might seek to take back some of the powers it forfeited in the handover to quasi-civilian control in The administration and reformers in Myanmar argued that the cause of reform would be set back by taking military-to-military diplomacy off the table, because military men in Myanmar are more likely to meet with and be persuaded by fellow uniformed officers.

Some members of the Armed Services committees found these arguments persuasive. Determined not to lose Myanmar, the House Armed Services Committee used its muscle to work out a compromise. While human rights activists might have won the day in previous sessions, by late last year concern about Chinese regional ambitions held greater sway. As concern about the expansion of Chinese influence carries greater and greater purchase with members of Congress, the likelihood increases that they will view individual countries and issues in East Asia in a broader regional context.

But the adoption of a single-minded focus on US—China competition is to trade one narrow prism for another. There must be a more sophisticated understanding of the politics of the region, particularly the concern of most regional states other than Japan that they not be made to choose between the United States and China.