Cabotage task force opposes McCain bill
An industry group dedicated to promoting U.S.-flag domestic shipping said it opposes legislation introduced last week by Sen. John McCain to eliminate the Jones Act.
“All the McCain bill would do is put more Americans out of work,” said the Maritime Cabotage Task Force, which at more than 400 members is the largest coalition representing domestic waterborne commerce.
The task force repeated industry comments that the Open America's Waters Act is 'based on the completely false claim that the Jones Act is hindering the Gulf clean-up effort” following the Deepwater Horizon accident. “The Coast Guard and National Incident Command have unambiguously rejected that idea.”
McCain said the Jones Act, which requires goods shipped between domestic ports to be carried by vessels built in the United States, and owned and crewed by Americans, “hinders free trade and favors labor unions over consumers.
“This restriction only serves to raise shipping costs, thereby making U.S. farmers less competitive and increasing costs for American consumers,” he added.
But the task force said McCain’s bill was “based on studies that are outdated and widely discredited.”
Its full statement is here.