Opponents of the Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST) — officially, the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) — should be encouraged by the outcome of Tuesday’s Senate elections, according to Patrick Goodenough of CNSNews.com.
As of last summer, 34 Republican senators, led by Sen. Jim DeMint (S.C.), had gone on the record opposing ratification of the treaty. Although Democrats gained two seats in the election, giving them an eight-seat edge over Republicans (10 if one includes the two seats that will be held by independents caucusing with Democrats), the number of LOST opponents has probably increased by two, Goodenough calculates.
LOST opponent Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), who is retiring, will be succeeded by Rep. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), who as a congressman “led an effort to urge senators not to ratify” the treaty, Goodenough writes. Kyl is the only LOST opponent leaving the Senate, but his replacement with Flake will not alter the balance of votes for or against the treaty.
Four Republicans who favor LOST ratification — Sens. Richard Lugar (Ind.), Scott Brown (Mass.), Olympia Snowe (Maine), and Kay Bailey Hutchison (Texas) — are departing. “Three of their replacements — Joe Donnelly (D) in Indiana, Elizabeth Warren (D) in Massachusetts and independent [Angus] King in Maine — will likely support ratification,” says Goodenough.
Meanwhile, Hutchison’s replacement, Ted Cruz (R), has declared LOST “ill-conceived, unworkable, and naïve.” “It must be defeated,” he added emphatically.
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