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Statement of Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) on Transferring Control of Six U.S. Ports to Dubai Ports World


Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA)  is a co-sponsor of Senator Chuck Schumer’s (D-NY) legislation, which would require a 45-day review of the port deal and that the Department of Treasury and Homeland Security brief Congress on the review’s findings, and give Congress the authority to reject the deal within 30 days of the review’s completion.

“I have grave concerns about the Bush Administration’s decision to allow Dubai Ports World to assume management and control of some of the nation’s biggest ports.  I believe this raises a host of security concerns that have not been adequately addressed.  That is why I strongly support efforts in Congress to place a temporary hold on this transfer so that a further investigation can be conducted, and Congress can review these findings before any final decision is made.  

“The Administration’s casual approach on this just underscores that Congress has to be vigilant and exercise oversight of this review.  

“It is not enough for the Bush Administration to say ‘trust us.’  The White House failed to conduct the 45-day review required by law, and completely disregarded concerns expressed by the Coast Guard about the national security implications of the deal.

“More than four years after the September 11th attacks, security at our nation’s seaports remains dramatically underfunded. The American people deserve to know that all necessary steps have been taken to protect homeland security before this deal is allowed to go forward.”

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