ITAR Reform Signed By President
TEA Party in Space Celebrates
ITAR Bi-Partisan Effort
January 7, 2013 —– For Immediate Release
TEA Party in Space
President, TEA Party in Space
(Washington DC) — Tea Party in Space (TPiS), a non-partisan organization, is elated that President Obama signed the International Trafficking of Arms Regulation (ITAR) reforms into law last week. The reforms enacted allow the President to present of list of items pertaining to the commercial satellite industry to congress for removal from the restrictive ITAR regulations. Congress will continue to retain its vital oversight role with the new law.
“This is a big deal,” said Andrew Gasser, President of TPiS. “For too long the hope of good intentions reigned supreme over the commercial satellite industry. For over thirteen years the industry has had to kowtow to regulators and bureaucrats who made it harder to compete globally. American ingenuity and exceptionalism can now compete in the global marketplace for business.”
Over the past few years other nations had a distinct advantage over the United States due to their regulatory laws. Some foreign companies even offered “ITAR Free” satellites that, while not having the same capability of American commercial satellites, had a distinct market advantage because of price and ease of purchase.
ITAR reform started in the Republican controlled house with bi-partisan support. Representative Adam Smith introduced HR-4310 which was co-sponsored by Rep. Buck McKeon, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, Rep. Kevin McCarthy, Rep. Howard Berman, Rep Rick Larsen, Rep Ileana Ros-Lethinen, Rep. Loretta Sanchez, Rep. Rob Bishop, and Rep Earl Blumeanauer. The bill then went to the senate where Senator Michael Bennet introduced SB-3211 which was co-sponsored by Senator Marco Rubio, Senator Mark Warner, and Senator Mark Udall.
“We were not sure how it would turn out in the senate. It was really ‘touch and go’ for a bit,” assessed Everett Dirksen Wilkerson, Vice Presided of TPiS. “The bill in the senate didn’t follow the traditional approach to making it to conference. And while we do not always agree on issues, Chairman Carl Levin took ITAR reform to the conference committee and a compromise was worked out. Democrats, Republicans, Liberals Conservatives, and the TEA Party can all celebrate this victory together.”
ITAR reform is the number one issue in the TPiS platform. Billions of dollars and countless thousands of jobs were lost because of ITAR regulations. The successful effort this year to reform export controls will overtime return thousands of Americans to good paying high skilled jobs. This reform represents fiscally responsible reform that protects American interests, but limits the power of government, and allows America to compete in the free market.
“The commercial satellite industry knows TPiS tirelessly walked up and down the halls of Congress and worked the phones relentlessly on this issue. We would like to thank all of our friends in industry and on the Hill who worked with us.” added Gary Anderson, National Coordinator and Director of Operations. “We didn’t gain from the effort, America did.”
TPiS looks forward to the President submitting a list of recommendations to the congress so America can maintain its leadership role in space.
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TEA Party in Space (TPIS), is a non-partisan, independent organization dedicated to educating the American people and their elected representatives in applying the core principles of fiscal responsibility, limited government, and free markets to the rapid and permanent expansion of American civilization into the space frontier, focusing on strategies for privatization, deregulation, and appropriate technology development partnerships between government institutions and the private sector. For more information, visit www.TEAPartyinSpace.org