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The Colombians Were Right!

An Obama aide alerts me to an interesting passage from McCain's Cuban Independence Day speech today:

We have made progress toward this vision by expanding the benefits of free commerce, through NAFTA, the Central American Free Trade Agreement, and our free trade agreements with Peru and Chile. But the progress has stalled; our longstanding bipartisan commitment to hemispheric prosperity is crumbling. We see this most vividly in Barack Obama's and Hillary Clinton's opposition to the free trade agreement with Colombia. The failure of the Congress to take up and approve this agreement is a reminder why 80 percent of Americans think we are on the wrong track [emphasis added]. Congress can find time to pass a pork-filled farm bill, but it cannot stir itself to support a key ally and further American prosperity.

Hmm... If McCain's point is that the Colombian free trade agreement--or, at least, the forces that doomed it in Congress--explain the wrong-track numbers, then this seems a tad hyperbolic. I have a hunch Iraq and the economy have something to do with the country's mood.

Who knows, though? Maybe Mark Penn was onto something.

--Noam Scheiber