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Public Leadership

Upon hearing of Mondev v. United States, a NAFTA investment case pending before an international tribunal, Margaret H. Marshall, Chief Justice of the Massachusetts court, was quoted in the New York Times as saying, “I was at a dinner party.  To say I was surprised to hear that a judgment of this court was being subjected to further review would be an understatement.”

Justice Marshall’s statement was echoed by her peers.  The Conference of Chief Justices, representing the 50 state supreme courts, has communicated to Congress and to the American public its “concern about the detrimental impact on traditional values of constitutional federalism and the finality of state court judgments of arbitration provisions contained in Chapter 11 of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and the recently approved Chile and Singapore Trade Agreements, and the currently pending Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA).”

General Content
Vermont Commission on International Trade and State Sovereignty Letter to President Obama
August 27th, 2010
Sen. Ginny Lyons and Rep. Kathleen Keenan write President Obama, warning that the investment and pharmaceutical chapters of the US-Korea FTA will harm state interests.

Letters to USTR
Concern for Federalism: National Associations Communicate with USTR
This letter from 2003 addresses the concerns of states and cities regarding federal-state consultation on trade, as well as particular concerns about investment agreements.

National Associations
Conference of Chief Justices Resolution 26
Resolution Regarding Provisions in International Trade Agreements Affecting the Sovereignty of State Judicial Systems and the Enforcement of State Court Judgments
US Conference of Mayors Resolution
US Conference of Mayors resolution on NAFTA's Chapter 11.
National Association of Towns and Townships on NAFTA
Letter to Sen. Barbara Boxer on NAFTA Chapter 11.

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