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Hill’s New Port Bill

On Monday, Hillary and New Jersey Sen. Robert Menendez issued the same exact press release proclaiming that they introduced their legislation to block the dubious Dubai deal in the Senate.

The bill (S. 2334) is said to "ban companies owned by foreign governments from controlling operations at U.S. ports," including the pending sale of U.S. port operations to Dubai Ports World, the company owned by the United Arab Emirates government. "In the post-9/11 world, we cannot afford to surrender our port operations to foreign governments," said Hill, in a likely attempt to deflect the criticism that her husband had no problem selling ports to companies owned by the Communist Chinese in the mid-1990s. "Port security is national security and national security is port security. Our legislation will stop foreign governments from managing, controlling, or owning U.S. port operations."

According to the press release, Hillary and Menendez were joined in introducing the bill by Sens. Frank Lautenberg, Barbara Boxer and Bill Nelsen.

In addition to the Clinton/Menendez bill, there are currently two other bills that have been introduced in the Senate regarding the Dubai port deal. S. 2333 was introduced by New York’s senior senator and Hillary nemesis Chuck Schumer on Monday, and it proposes to "require an investigation under the Defense Production Act of 1950 of the acquisition by Dubai Ports World of the Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company." It does not propose to more broadly ban companies owned by foreign governments from controlling operations at U.S. ports.

Hillary has joined as cosponsor of this bill, along with Menendez, Lautenberg and Boxer, but not Nelsen. Then there is Senate Joint Resolution 32, also introduced on Monday, which expresses the Sense of the Senate "Disapproving the results of the review conducted by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) into the purchase of Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation (P&O) by Dubai Ports World (DP World)."

And finally, there is S. 855, which was introduced in November 2005 and which authorizes $2 billion to promote port security. The latter two bills are sponsored by Sen. Susan Collins, but Hillary, who supposedly cares so much about this issue, hasn’t jumped to cosponsor either of bills, even though Collins is Chairwoman of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, which would theoretically know how to best protect our ports. Perhaps partisanship continues at the port water’s edge.

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