WASHINGTON – Since U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA) and U.S. Representative Maria Salazar (R-FL-27) released a discussion draft of their Americas Act in January, the proposal has gained significant momentum, including the announcement that U.S. Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO) has joined the effort as the Senate co-lead.
“We are looking to reprioritize partnerships in the Western Hemisphere and level the playing field between freedom-loving democracies and those who exploit the rules,” said Dr. Cassidy. “Members of both parties, Latin American presidents, and ambassadors are registering their support for our effort. We have momentum.”
“The Americas Act is an opportunity to renew our partnerships on trade, supply chains, energy, and immigration across the Western Hemisphere, and to live up to our values in our shared struggle for democracy. I’m grateful for the growing support from civic leaders in our country and across the region who understand that the United States cannot allow any more time to pass without offering compelling investment opportunities across Latin America and the Caribbean,” said Senator Bennet.
“The Americas Act is the 21st century solution to ensuring the Western Hemisphere remains free of totalitarian control and on the road to prosperity,” said Representative Salazar. “Freedom-loving countries throughout Latin America are hungry for economic liberty and engagement with the United States. It’s time to invest in our allies and keep the Chinese Communist Party out of our hemisphere.”
One of the most encouraging signs came when eight Latin American ambassadors attended a Senate Finance subcommittee hearing on the Western Hemisphere as a show of support for Cassidy’s Americas Act. Ambassadors in attendance included Andres Duran of Uruguay, Catalina Crespo of Costa Rica, Alfonso Quinones of Guatemala, Gustavo Mesa Cuadra of Peru, Ivonne Baki of Ecuador, Ramon Martinez of Panama, Sonia Guzman of the Dominican Republic, and Luis Murillo of Columbia.
Here’s what else people are saying:
In May, Cassidy spoke at the Council of the Americas Washington Conference to discuss the Americas Act. He highlighted the need for the U.S. to reimagine its neglected Latin America policy and urged the Biden administration to take a more comprehensive approach to the hemisphere.