We have 20 years of lived experience since NAFTA. Across the country, our failed trade policy is connected with rising inequality, weaker environmental policies, and growing corporate influence over how we set goals and manage our economy.
The US and 11 other countries are negotiating a huge new trade deal, called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) “Fast track” legislation was introduced in the House and Senate to TPP through Congress. Neither bill is going anywhere.
We expect that inequality will be a featured issue in the mid-term elections, later this year. We can’t make progress on inequality, if TPP passes.
The US Trade Representative, Michael Froman, has started “reading in” members of Congress, to assure them that we’ve had great results from NAFTA, that TPP will not reinforce the shift of power toward global companies, and TPP will not restrict policy options for environment, labor, human rights, public health, financial regulation and internet freedom.
We need to keep in touch with our elected officials, to make sure they understand that the USTR’s credibility on this issue is fading rapidly as we see the real consequences of our bad policies to date.
The best statement, so far, on new trade legislation in Congress comes from Representatives George Miller, Louise Slaughter and Rosa LeLauro:
Our constituents did not send us to Washington to ship their jobs overseas, and Congress will not be a rubber stamp for another flawed trade deal that will hang the middle class out to dry.
Nice 12 minute background video on TPP