The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is an attempt at the most ambitious and far-reaching free trade agreement ever. Unfortunately, the negotiations are being carried out in secret. More than 600 global corporations have had unfettered access in shaping the agreement, while Congress, the public, environmental organizations, and labor have seen only a few chapters that were leaked. The environmental chapter contains no penalties or criminal sanctions. Another chapter would prohibit bans on risky bank activities and undermine "too big to fail" regulations.
But didn't trade agreements, like NAFTA among Canada, US, and Mexico, lift our economies and create jobs? NO! Even advocates of trade pacts admit that they lose US jobs. They argue that the lower prices of imported goods sold in the US make up for this loss of jobs. But the Center for Economic and Policy Research found the opposite: Following recent trade pacts, US workers without college degrees lost more than 12% of their buying power—a loss of $3,300 annually for the most vulnerable sector of our society.
The TPP would be among the major Pacific trading countries with the glaring exception of China. This is viewed as part of the American "Asia-Pacific Pivot", an unsubtle attempt to contain China, increasing tensions in that area.
To compound the problem, recently introduced Senate bill S1900 and House Bill HR3830 will "fast track" the TPP which would allow only 90 days for review and mandate an up-or-down vote without any opportunity for amendments.
Urge your Senators to oppose S1900 and your Representative to oppose HR3830, the disastrous Fast Track Authority bills for the TPP. This trade deal is so riven with problems that it needs to be carefully examined as it could seriously undermine our environmental, banking, and labor laws, cost US jobs, and further reduce the buying power of tens of millions of Americans.
(202) 224-3121 (Capital switchboard)
Senator or Representative (first & last name)
U.S. Senate, Washington, D.C. 20510
U.S. House of Representatives, Washington, D.C. 20515
Photo credit: Tim Barber, 2013