Newsflash:
Issues Economic and Social Justice Stop TPP Fast Track Stop Global Warming House Hacks Away at Environmental Regulations
Saturday, 23 November 2013 19:38

House Hacks Away at Environmental Regulations

Written by  Cole Stangler | In These Times
An oil well near Tioga, North Dakota. An oil well near Tioga, North Dakota. Photo by Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images

In two-day binge, the GOP greased the way for drilling and fracking.

This week, the House of Representatives passed three climate-related bills designed to target and weaken federal environmental regulations:

Together they speed up the permitting process for cross-country natural gas pipelines and for drilling on federal lands; impose fines on those wanting to protest the government’s decisions to grant drilling permits; and undercut pending federal fracking regulations.

Each of the bills’ Republican sponsors have painted their legislative initiative as necessary fixes to the Obama administration’s regulatory overreach—a claim that’s heavily disputed by Athan Manuel, the Sierra Club’s director of lands protection.

“These bills are all meant to fix problems that don’t exist,” Manuel says. “There’s this perception that the Obama administration is holding back the oil and gas industry, when it’s not true. They get plenty of permits. … The oil industry’s making lots of money. And they don’t have a lack of access to areas to drill.”

The largest and most sweeping of the legislative efforts, the Federal Lands Jobs and Energy Security Act, which passed on Wednesday by a 228-192 margin, gives the Department of the Interior sixty days to approve applications from oil and gas companies to drill on federal land. If the DOI doesn’t issue a decision in that time, the application is automatically approved. The bill, introduced by Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Col.), also imposes a $5,000 fee on anybody who files an administrative appeal to protest the federal government’s decision to issue a permit or not—a practice that citizens, consumer advocacy groups and environmental activists often take advantage of.

“The notion that … we have to pay up for that is ridiculous,” says Bobby McEnaney, a senior lands analyst for the Natural Resources Defense Council. “Particularly when you contrast that with what we’re talking about—an industry that is the most moneyed industry on the planet that has unlimited resources to influence administrative decisions, political decisions, local government. One of the few tools that citizens have on their own is this vested right to participate in the administrative process on how their lands will be managed. Absent that you end up … turning the federal lands into a quasi-oil state, where the decisions that are made in the interests of the oil and gas industry first and everybody else second.”  

McEnaney says that appeal process has previously “proven quite valuable.”  He points to how earlier this month, in response to an appeal, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) cancelled a proposal to auction off drilling permits in the San Rafael Swell wilderness area in Utah.

Among other things, the bill also opens up a minimum of 125,000 acres of federal land for the commercial development of oil shale—an unconventional energy source considered more environmentally damaging than crude oil because of the intensive heating process that is required to make the fuel viable for transportation and consumption. And in a voice-vote, the House passed an amendment offered by Rep. Doc Hastings (R-Wash.) that halves the BLM’s existing $10 million budget for wind and solar permitting on public land.

Meanwhile, the Protecting States’ Rights to Promote American Energy Security Act is a direct attack on the federal government’s ongoing efforts to draft the first-ever nation-wide regulations of hydraulic fracturing, a process whereby companies inject a mixture of chemicals, water and sand into the ground in order to extract oil and gas. As a result of public health concerns associated with fracking, the BLM is at work drafting rules regulating the practice on public lands. But Bill Flores’ (R-Texas) bill, which passed by a 235-187 vote, prohibits the enforcement of federal fracking regulations in any state that already has its own state oversight in place. Critics say that, in practice, that would nullify the BLM’s forthcoming regulations, since the open-ended legislative language doesn’t specify what would qualify as a proper state regulation.

The fracking bill is particularly frustrating for environmentalists because most of them consider the BLM’s pending regulations extremely weak to begin with. Even the most stringent part of the latest draft version simply requires that companies disclose what kind of chemicals they’re injecting into the ground. And that provision is scaled back from the first version. The latest draft requires well operators to disclose chemicals after-the-fact and includes broad exemptions for companies who want to avoid sharing “trade secrets.” Fracking foes say this regulatory retreat is a result of a very successful lobbying effort from energy companies.

Manuel of the Sierra Club says that House Republicans are going above and beyond what the fracking industry wants—in other words, the vote is more of a messaging tactic to their voter base who want to see the GOP take on the administration. “The industry has gotten quite a bit of what they wanted in these proposed fracking rules,” he says. “I don’t think they feel shut out of the process and need this kind of intervention from the House to advocate for their positions. They’re doing it the old-fashioned way, by hammering and lobbying the administration.”

The last of the bills to pass, which did so by a 252-165 margin, the Natural Gas Pipeline Permitting Reform Act, imposes a 12-month deadline on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to approve or deny applications for natural gas pipelines. Other regulatory agencies would have only 90 days to weigh in after the FERC releases an environmental review of the proposed project. If any of the agencies fail to meet those deadlines, the pipeline under consideration is automatically approved.   

It’s highly unlikely that any of the bills could pass the Senate in its current form. The White House has also issued veto threats on all three. But there may be some limited bipartisan support in the Senate for least a couple of the provisions passed this week.

For instance, there’s already a version of the fracking bill in the Senate—the Empower States Act introduced by John Hoeven (R-N.D.) in August. That legislation has four co-sponsors, including Democrats Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) and Mary Landrieu (D-La.).

And as Politico reported on Thursday, the author of the gas pipeline bill, Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.) is optimistic that his legislation could get some traction through a potential compromise in the Senate, where Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) has expressed interest in addressing methane leaks on pipelines. Wyden’s office, however, told reporters there are no plans to hold hearings on the topic anytime soon.

For Kate Fried, water policy communications director of Food and Water Watch, the week’s proceedings in the House are a sobering reminder of the energy industry’s oversized political influence. She points to a study released this week by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington that documents a 231 percent spike in the fracking industry’s political contributions between 2004 and 2012. In the most recent election cycle, the report found, companies operating hydraulically fractured wells and the trade associations representing them gave $6.9 million to Congressional candidates.

Moreover, the congressmen who led this week’s trio of energy bills are some of the biggest recipients of campaign cash from oil and gas companies in the House. In the last election cycle, Pompeo and Flores took in $302,300 and $202,506 respectively from such companies, making both of them among the top 20 recipients of industry money in the lower chamber. Lamborn, for his part, got more campaign donations from oil and gas companies than any other industry during his most recent re-election campaign.

Like Fried, the NRDC’s McEnaney says this week’s votes reveal that the fossil fuel industry holds enormous sway over Congress.

“It shows how entrenched the oil and gas industry is when it comes to moving Congress,” says McEnaney. “Given all the things that Congress should be doing—in particular working on a budget and appropriations—they are focused on presenting a peel-back of all the environmental laws that are out there in order to facilitate oil and gas industry interests.”

Original article on In These Times

Read 5631 times Last modified on Saturday, 23 November 2013 19:42

Trans Pacific Partnership Fast Track - Where Does Your Legislator Stand

Click your state to see your Senators and Representatives

Green = Most Legislators Oppose Fast Track, Yellow = Some Opposition, Orange = Oppose TPP, Gray = Unknown
DeLauro 13 - Signed 2013 DeLauro/Miller letter
Pocan - Signed Freshman Letter Opposing Fast Track
W/M - Signed Ways and Means Letter opposing TPP
Gibson - Signed Rep. Chris Gibson letter opposing TPP
SOPA - Oppose Stop Online Piracy Act - voted against
Currency - Oppose Currency Manipulation (Signed Michaud Letter)
Textile - Oppose changes to "First Yarn" (Signed Textile Industry Letter)

TPP and Trade Articles

  • Currency Manipulation Costs Jobs in Indiana
    Currency Manipulation Costs Jobs in Indiana American businesses could be hiring more workers today if we ended unfair trade practices used by some of our trading partners. No matter how competitive companies are in Indiana, they struggle to keep up with foreign competitors that are given an unearned advantage because of currency manipulation.
    Written on Thursday, 21 August 2014 01:23 Read more...
  • Real People Pushed Out of TPP Talks
    Real People Pushed Out of TPP Talks Who are you going to believe — Senator Elizabeth Warren or Congressman Jared Polis?
    Written on Monday, 18 August 2014 02:04 Read more...
  • What Happens in Geneva…
    What Happens in Geneva… Most progressives are, by now, familiar with the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the proposed trade deal that would link the United States with Pacific Rim powerhouses like Australia and Japan. Wonkier corners of the left are equally conversant in the intrigue of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), a pact that would couple the United States and the European Union.
    Written on Tuesday, 12 August 2014 16:26 Read more...
  • Lame Duck Hunt and the Fast Track Flush, Installment #1
    Lame Duck Hunt and the Fast Track Flush, Installment #1 Yet more secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations are underway today in Washington. Thanks to some hearty protestors braving the heat and humidity to hold a location pointer out in front of the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, the word got out.
    Written on Thursday, 07 August 2014 01:40 Read more...
  • TPP Media March
    TPP Media March

    We'll be back in September

    Written on Monday, 04 August 2014 16:41 Read more...
  • TPP Webinar Tonight - Rep. Jim McGovern Special Guest
    TPP Webinar Tonight - Rep. Jim McGovern Special Guest

    Our special guest tonight is Rep. Jim McGovern. Rep. McGovern has long been a friend to working people, an advocate for Fair Trade, and a champion for economic equality. We'll talk about the future of trade agreements, and get his take on the current state of TPP and Fast Track leading into Congress' recess week and the next round of TPP talks. Join the Webinar at http://www.anymeeting.com/moveforjustice1

    Written on Sunday, 29 June 2014 16:40 Read more...
  • Locking Out Financial Regulation
    Locking Out Financial Regulation

    The world of international trade negotiators is an increasingly secret one, with even other agencies of national governments not fully aware of what is being offered by their negotiators in such deals. One current example is a pending "trade" deal called the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA), which is being negotiated among 50 countries, including the United States, the EU, Australia, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Hong Kong, Iceland, Israel, Japan, Liechtenstein, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Panama, Peru, South Korea, and Switzerland. This agreement is apparently supposed to be "classified" information – in other words, secret and unknown to the public that will be affected by it – for a full five years after it is enters into force or the negotiations are terminated!

    Written on Sunday, 29 June 2014 11:36 Read more...
  • WikiLeaks Reveals Global Trade Deal Kept More Secret Than the Trans-Pacific Partnership
    WikiLeaks Reveals Global Trade Deal Kept More Secret Than the Trans-Pacific Partnership

    Embattled WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange announced Wednesday from London the publication of a secret draft text of the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA), a controversial global trade agreement said to make it easier for corporations to make profits and operate with impunity across borders.

    Written on Friday, 20 June 2014 17:15 Read more...
  • The next NAFTA, but worse
    The next NAFTA, but worse

    You can win some impressive victories against corporate power on the local level. Boulder voters declared that corporations aren’t people and money isn’t speech. Cities across Colorado (and other states) have passed fracking bans and moratoriums.

    Written on Thursday, 22 May 2014 03:50 Read more...
  • Trans-Pacific Partnership Don't fast-track this deal
    Trans-Pacific Partnership  Don't fast-track this deal

    Trans-Pacific Partnership

    Don't fast-track this deal

    President Barack Obama was in Asia recently, desperately trying to broker support for the Trans-Pacific Partnership despite growing opposition at home and abroad. This secretly negotiated "free trade" agreement would encompass 40 percent of the global economy and change the face of trade for many years to come.

    Written on Thursday, 22 May 2014 03:34 Read more...
  • Passing the TPP: Not so fast
    Passing the TPP: Not so fast

    A rebellion is breaking out in the Democratic Party, but it’s not like the 1960s when the party was torn apart over the Vietnam War and civil rights for blacks. In those days, Democrats were united in support of the New Deal/Great Society approach to economics. Today, the situation is reversed. There isn’t any significant split over foreign policy or social issues. Now Democrats are divided over economics.

    Written on Monday, 19 May 2014 16:50 Read more...
  • Free trade on steroids: The threat of the Trans-Pacific Partnership
    Free trade on steroids: The threat of the Trans-Pacific Partnership

    Many supporters of the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, trade agreement are arguing that its fate rests on President Obama's bilateral talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Japan this week. If Japan and the United States can sort out market access issues for agriculture and automobiles, the wisdom goes, this huge deal — in effect, a North American Free Trade Agreementon steroids — can at last be concluded.

    Written on Monday, 21 April 2014 00:00 Read more...
  • Lobbyists Deceptively Claim the Public Favors Fast-Tracking Trade Agreements
    Lobbyists Deceptively Claim the Public Favors Fast-Tracking Trade Agreements

    Critics of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)—a massive trade agreement being negotiated by the United States, Canada, Japan, Singapore and other Pacific Rim countries—say that pro-trade business lobbyists have rolled out misleading polling data in an attempt to demonstrate public support for the deal that isn’t there.

    Written on Wednesday, 02 April 2014 00:00 Read more...
  • Biden Remark Casts Doubt on Pillar of U.S. Trade Agenda
    Biden Remark Casts Doubt on Pillar of U.S. Trade Agenda

    WASHINGTON — Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. on Friday acknowledged that Congress will not grant President Obama fast-track trade promotion authority, which analysts say is critical to the president’s hopes to forge huge trade deals with Asia and Europe.

    Written on Friday, 14 February 2014 21:34 Read more...
  • Hated on the Left, the TPP Draws Conservative Foes
    Hated on the Left, the TPP Draws Conservative Foes

    “The President said, if you like your health insurance, you can keep it,” says Curtis Ellis of the American Jobs Alliance, a small conservative group based in Virginia that opposes the outsourcing of U.S. jobs overseas. “Now essentially, with Obamatrade, he’s saying, if you like your job, you can keep it.”

    Written on Sunday, 02 February 2014 16:46 Read more...
  • Harry Reid: Fast Track Free Trade Bill Goes Nowhere
    Harry Reid: Fast Track Free Trade Bill Goes Nowhere

    WASHINGTON -- The fast track trade bill introduced in the Senate last week will go nowhere anytime soon, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said Tuesday.

    Written on Wednesday, 29 January 2014 19:56 Read more...
  • 5 Things to Do This Week to Derail the TPP Fast Track
    5 Things to Do This Week to Derail the TPP Fast Track

    No matter what your top issue is, we can all agree that decisions that affect all of us should not be made in secret without input from the public. The Camp-Baucus Fast Track bill would limit the ability of Congress to meaningfully debate and amend trade agreements.

    Written on Tuesday, 28 January 2014 14:56 Read more...
  • Who Backs the TPP and a 'NAFTA on Steroids'? Nobody Even Slightly Progressive
    Who Backs the TPP and a 'NAFTA on Steroids'? Nobody Even Slightly Progressive

    If President Obama uses his State of the Union address to launch a major push for “fast-track” authority to bypass congressional input and oversight on a sweeping Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal, he will need new allies to generate support around the country.

    Written on Saturday, 25 January 2014 01:20 Read more...
  • Obama's State of the Union Dilemma: Pushing Fast Track for TPP Would Increase Income Inequality
    Obama's State of the Union Dilemma: Pushing Fast Track for TPP Would Increase Income Inequality

    In his upcoming State of the Union speech, President Barack Obama is expected to prioritize what is emerging as his legacy issue: combatting America's growing wealth inequality. Expect him to promote policies to create new middle-class jobs, especially in manufacturing, and counter the erosion of wages now undermining workers economy-wide.

    But in the speech, Obama is also expected to highlight several major trade initiatives, including his priority Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal, a massive pact with 11 Asian and Latin American nations that Obama hopes to sign quickly. The business lobby is at full tilt pushing Obama to use the SOTU to call on Congress to pass Fast Track trade authority for the TPP.

    Written on Friday, 24 January 2014 16:42 Read more...
  • Over 50 Groups. One Call: 'Stop Fast Track' of TPP
    Over 50 Groups. One Call: 'Stop Fast Track' of TPP

    StopFastTrack.com highlights how secretive trade deal "threatens everything you care about: democracy, jobs, the environment, and the Internet."

    With the launch of StopFastTrack.com, the organizations highlight how renewal of Fast Track legislation, also known as Trade Legislation Authority, would take away Congress' democratic power in deliberating and amending the TPP, which thus far has been negotiated behind closed doors, with the only information about it being provided through leaks.

    Written on Friday, 24 January 2014 16:29 Read more...
  • Ellison’s Steps to Income Equality: More Powerful Unions and Weaker Trade
    Ellison’s Steps to Income Equality: More Powerful Unions and Weaker Trade

    Congressional Progressive Caucus co-chairman Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) said that increasing the power of unions is key to addressing income inequality in America.

    Written on Thursday, 23 January 2014 14:56 Read more...
  • Rep. Raúl Grijalva: Trans-Pacific trade deal is bad for working Americans
    Rep. Raúl Grijalva: Trans-Pacific trade deal is bad for working Americans

    No matter what line of work you’re in, you should be watching the debate over the emerging trade deal called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) very closely.

    It’s going to impact the American economy as much as NAFTA, and whatever version gets approved is going to be with us for a very long time.

    Written on Wednesday, 22 January 2014 21:12 Read more...
  • TPP Tweets for January 14th
    TPP Tweets for January 14th

    Please join our Twitter storm on Tuesday, January 14th at 9pm Eastern. You can use the PDA map to find out what TPP issues are of interest/concern to your Congress Member.

    Written on Monday, 13 January 2014 00:00 Read more...
  • New Fast-Track Bill Means Higher Trade Deficits and Lost Jobs
    New Fast-Track Bill Means Higher Trade Deficits and Lost Jobs

    Senator Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and Representative Dave Camp (R-Mich.) have officially introduced fast-track trade authority legislation in Congress. Fast track is a process that bypasses Congress’ constitutional role in the treaty process. Fast track prohibits amendments to a trade treaty, limits Congress’ right to debate and requires an up-or-down vote (even though Senate Republicans have filibustered more than 400 other times since President Obama took office) within 90 days of the treaty coming before the Congress.

    Written on Saturday, 11 January 2014 02:13 Read more...
  • Get Ready for the 2014 Trade Tsunami
    Get Ready for the 2014 Trade Tsunami

    Hard work, smart planning and perseverance made 2013 a year of inspiring fair-trade activism. Vibrant grassroots activism and dogged D.C. advocacy resulted in a new level of public and congressional concern about the perils of Fast Track and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

    Written on Saturday, 21 December 2013 22:35 Read more...
  • Calgary-based mining company suing Costa Rica for more than $1 billion
    Calgary-based mining company suing Costa Rica for more than $1 billion

    A billion-dollar showdown is looming in Central America this week as a Calgary-based mining company announced it will sue the country of Costa Rica, infuriating residents who say their sovereignty is being taken away.

    Infinito Gold was hoping to operate an open-pit gold mine in the Crucitas region of Costa Rica’s north.

    Written on Thursday, 12 December 2013 12:08 Read more...
  • Obama's Corporate Agenda Delayed as TPP Misses Deadline
    Obama's Corporate Agenda Delayed as TPP Misses Deadline

    Negotiators fail to close deal amid revelations of internal discord over US corporate bullying. The Obama administration's pro-corporate Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agenda appears to have missed a deadline.

    Written on Wednesday, 11 December 2013 00:57 Read more...
  • WTO agreement condemned as deal for corporations, not world's poor
    WTO agreement condemned as deal for corporations, not world's poor

    First global trade deal in 20 years to boost world commerce 'favours big business at the expense of developing countries' The World Trade Organisation has sealed its first global trade deal after almost 160 ministers who had gathered on the Indonesian island of Bali agreed to reforms to boost world commerce.

    Written on Sunday, 08 December 2013 16:02 Read more...
  • Anti-poverty groups condemn WTO pact as big business boost
    Anti-poverty groups condemn WTO pact as big business boost

    Developing countries including India win concessions but critics say World Trade Organisation is no forum for helping the poor. The first global trade deal since the creation of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) nearly two decades ago was condemned by anti-poverty groups on Friday as a boost for big business at the expense of developing nations.

    Written on Sunday, 08 December 2013 15:55 Read more...
  • New Trans-Pacific Partnership Caucus In US Congress
    New Trans-Pacific Partnership Caucus In US Congress

    A new caucus of supporters of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement under negotiation was launched yesterday in the US Congress.

    The Friends of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) caucus is headed by four co-chairman: Republican Reps. David Reichert of Washington and Charles Boustany of Louisiana, and Democratic Reps. Ron Kind of Wisconsin and Gregory Meeks of New York.

    Written on Tuesday, 26 November 2013 00:30 Read more...
  • The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty is the Complete Opposite of 'Free Trade'
    The Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty is the Complete Opposite of 'Free Trade' The TPP would strip our constitutional rights, while offering no gains for the majority of Americans. It's a win for corporations. The proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement among 12 governments, touted as one of the largest "free trade" agreements in US history, is running into difficulties as the public learns more about it.
    Written on Saturday, 23 November 2013 21:10 Read more...
  • Trade talks open in Utah, but secrecy spurs protests
    Trade talks open in Utah, but secrecy spurs protests

    Outside Salt Lake City’s Grand America Hotel on Tuesday, the rains fell, the speakers rose, the marchers chanted.

    Inside, top trade negotiators from the United States and 11 other Pacific Rim nations perhaps discussed imports and exports, profits and products, prices and patents. The exact topics aren’t known. The talks were closed.

    Written on Wednesday, 20 November 2013 00:31 Read more...
  • TPP Disclosure Shows It Will Kill People and Internet; House Opposition Is Widespread
    TPP Disclosure Shows It Will Kill People and Internet; House Opposition Is Widespread

    We wrote yesterday that this deal, the Trans Pacific Partnership, already looked to be in trouble given both Congressional and foreign opposition. The Administration has conducted the talks with an unheard-of degree of secrecy, with Congressional staffers in most cases denied access to the text and even Congressmen themselves facing unheard-of obstacles (Alan Grayson reported that the US Trade Representative created an absurd six weeks of dubious delays in his case).

    Written on Saturday, 16 November 2013 02:02 Read more...
  • New Trans Pacific trade partnership stirs worries
    New Trans Pacific trade partnership stirs worries

    The New York Times reported serious worry in the U.S. Congress about the Trans Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement (TPP for short), a massive new free trade deal being pushed by the United States with the involvement of 11 other countries on both sides of the Pacific. About 170 Congresspersons have signed on to one or more of three letters which oppose fast track status forthe deal.

    Written on Friday, 15 November 2013 16:16 Read more...
  • Secret Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP)
    Secret Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) The TPP is the largest-ever economic treaty, encompassing nations representing more than 40 per cent of the world’s GDP. The WikiLeaks release of the text comes ahead of the decisive TPP Chief Negotiators summit in Salt Lake City, Utah, on 19-24 November 2013. 

    Written on Friday, 15 November 2013 01:26 Read more...
  • Some 194 Members of Congress Publicly Express Trans Pacific Partnership Concerns to the President
    Some 194 Members of Congress Publicly Express Trans Pacific Partnership Concerns to the President

    Today, 151 Democratic members of the House of Representatives sent a letter to President Obama laying out their concerns about the lack of consultation during the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations and their opposition to “fast tracking” the deal without any meaningful congressional input. House Democrats joined the growing chorus of some 194 members of Congress who have publicly expressed their frustrations with this massive trade agreement.

    Written on Thursday, 14 November 2013 00:00 Read more...
  • Letters: More scrutiny of the TPP trade pact
    Letters: More scrutiny of the TPP trade pact The TPP also would extend trade preferences to such countries as Vietnam instead of holding them accountable for their deplorable human rights and worker records.  And the TPP would enable polluting corporations to challenge clean air and water policies if they interfered with expected profits.

    Written on Friday, 01 November 2013 15:15 Read more...
  • Trade Issues Remain Low-Profile in Congress
    Trade Issues Remain Low-Profile in Congress

    To hear lawmakers tell it, efforts to move trade legislation through the House Ways and Means Committee, while earnest and ongoing, have hit snags in the 113th Congress.

    Several big pieces of legislation are slowly winding their way through the committee, including bills dealing with trade-promotion authority and the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership.

    Written on Thursday, 24 October 2013 15:45 Read more...
  • Trading You In
    Trading You In

    Ten score and thirteen years ago corporate forefathers began conquering wilderness, steam, gas, oil, electricity, transcontinental rails and airways communication, prospering by quenching America’s thirst for more, better, faster.  Now we who built it, want more, faster, so thinking locally, we trade globally.  Thus unlike you, we will always have money to eat.

    Written on Monday, 21 October 2013 00:00 Read more...
  • Will Obama Fast-Track the Trans-Pacific Partnership?
    Will Obama Fast-Track the Trans-Pacific Partnership?

    President Barack Obama has demanding a ‘trade promotion authority’ from the United States Congress to fast-track the Pacific Rim treaty, the Trans-Pacific Partnership.[1]

    The fast-track authority plays a pivotal role in determining the extent to which the United States Congress can engage in a critical review of trade agreements.[2]

    Written on Thursday, 17 October 2013 20:25 Read more...
  • There's an International Plan to Censor the Internet in the Works -- Let's Stop It in Its Tracks
    There's an International Plan to Censor the Internet in the Works -- Let's Stop It in Its Tracks

    How the Trans Pacific Partnership making its way through Washington seriously undermines citizens’ rights to participate in a free and open Internet. One month. That’s the time left before the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) could become a finalized agreement.

    Written on Wednesday, 16 October 2013 00:05 Read more...
  • A Corporate Coup in Disguise
    A Corporate Coup in Disguise

    The Trans-Pacific Partnership would create a virtually permanent corporate rule over the people. What if our national leaders told us that communities across America had to eliminate such local programs as Buy Local, Buy American, Buy Green, etc. to allow foreign corporations to have the right to make the sale on any products purchased with our tax dollars?

    Written on Thursday, 03 October 2013 03:17 Read more...
  • 'Flush the TPP!': Protesters Scale Trade Building in Protest of Secretive Deal
    'Flush the TPP!': Protesters Scale Trade Building in Protest of Secretive Deal

    Protesters scaled the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative on Monday and dropped banners calling for greater transparency and an end to "corporatocracy" over the ongoing and secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement currently in the works between the United States and several Pacific nations.

    Written on Tuesday, 24 September 2013 03:31 Read more...
  • Secretive Free Trade Agreement Puts Climate, Public Health at Risk
    Secretive Free Trade Agreement Puts Climate, Public Health at Risk

    New warnings on TPP, free trade 'regime' fostering 'global emergency situation'

    As secretive talks over the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP)—the pending free trade agreement slammed as "NAFTA on steroids" and "a quiet coup for the investor class"—continue, new warnings highlight the corporate winners and global losers at stake.

    Written on Monday, 16 September 2013 02:45 Read more...
  • Stop the Trans Pacific Partnership Fast Track
    Stop the Trans Pacific Partnership Fast Track

    President Obama has asked Congress to provide “Fast Track” authorization for consideration of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) a new “free trade” deal.

    The negotiations for this new “free trade” agreement have been conducted in secret. Members of Congress as well as the public have no factual information about the contents of this deal.

    Written on Sunday, 15 September 2013 17:36 Read more...
  • TPP Talking Points

    The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a proposed agreement between the U.S. and 12 nations that do business throughout the Pacific Rim. TPP and its European cousin the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (aka TAFTA), are "free trade" agreements that do much more than the term implies.

    Written on Monday, 02 September 2013 00:00 Read more...
  • Obama's secret trade deal threatens prescription drug prices on global scale
    Obama's secret trade deal threatens prescription drug prices on global scale

    The US pharmaceutical industry has been shaping elements of the Obama administration’s secret Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement to favor their own profits. But the deal could also could cause the price of prescription drugs and some medical devices to soar on a global scale.

    Written on Saturday, 27 July 2013 00:00 Read more...
  • Pocan Calls for Increased Transparency on Trans-Pacific Partnership Free Trade Agreement to Protect American Jobs
    Pocan Calls for Increased Transparency on Trans-Pacific Partnership Free Trade Agreement to Protect American Jobs

    Pocan urges Congress not to give up its constitutional authority to oversee foreign trade agreements

    Written on Friday, 14 June 2013 00:00 Read more...
  • Alan Grayson On Trans-Pacific Partnership: Obama Secrecy Hides 'Assault On Democratic Government'
    Alan Grayson On Trans-Pacific Partnership: Obama Secrecy Hides 'Assault On Democratic Government'

    Progressive Democrats in Congress are ramping up pressure on the Obama administration to release the text of Trans-Pacific Partnership, a secretive free trade agreement with 10 other nations, amid intensifying controversy over the administration's transparency record and its treatment of classified information.

    Written on Thursday, 13 June 2013 00:00 Read more...

Join "Countdown to Coverage" Share TPP with your Daily Newspaper

CWA devised a simple plan for which they were uniquely suited: drag TPP out of the shadows and into the light - one city at a time - using a medium they understand intimately: Daily Newspapers!

Two CWA members - Dave Felice in Denver, CO and Madelyn Elder in Portland, OR have started the ball rolling. We just need to keep up the momentum leading up to a big day of petition deliveries.

Button-ShareTPPWithNewspaper

Step 1 is to send an Op-Ed to your Daily Newspaper.

Join our Twitter Storm

If you have a Twitter account you can help stop Fast Track on the TPP. Sign-in to your Twitter account and copy and paste the Tweets from our Twitter storm. Or you can copy your favorite Tweet and then click on the map and Tweet your legislator.

Twitter Storm Tweets for Tuesday, January 28th @ 9pm Eastern

Tweets for the special State of the Union Twitter Storm will be posted on January 28th at 8pm EST. Check back for the new Tweets.

Find Your Member of Congress

Click here to quickly find your member of Congress by putting in your home address. This site also features a one-click link to the same information in Spanish

ButtonFindElectedOfficials

Then call and ask them to oppose Fast Track on the Trans Pacific Partnership.

Sample script is below.

Script

“I'm a constituent, and I am strongly opposed to my representative giving away Congress’ constitutional authority to control our trade policy. We send people to Congress to stand up for us, not give away their power to stop more American job offshoring and protect us from dangerous imported food that doesn’t meet our safety standards. This latest so-called trade deal, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), would not only do that - but also ban Buy American and increase our medicine prices. That’s why it’s crucial that Congress not give away its authority to make sure every provision of TPP is in our interest before this massive deal can be signed. Good trade deals don’t need to be railroaded through Congress using Fast Track. I hope my representative will commit to opposing this outrageous legislation.”

Email Your Senators and Rep - Say No On Fast Track and TPP

Send an email directly to your Senators and Representatives courtesy of our partners at CWA. Enter your zip code and your members are automatically selected.

Button-EmailYourRep2

Sign the Petition - Sen. Sanders Run as a Democrat in 2016

Button-SandersPetition

Report on your TPP Contact

Please let us know your legislator's stance on Fast Track Authorization for the Trans Pacific Partnership as well as their stance on the TPP in General. Click here to report the response.

The Trans Pacific Partnership: Corporate Global Domination

Lori Wallach on the TPP from PDA Progressive Roundtable

Progressive Roundtable with Reps. Ellison and Pocan and Lori Wallach on TPP

Lori Wallach Leaked TPP Documents (Democracy NOW)

TPP: The Biggest Threat to the Internet You've Probably Never Heard Of

Lori Wallach on Thom Hartmann (Great Minds) - The TPP

Flush the TPP

Congress only has one more week in session this year, the week of December 9. So far our pressure to stop the TPP has been working. Visit Flush the TPP for calling scripts and links to Members of the Ways and Means Committee.

Flush the TPP

TPP Downloads

The following documents are available from the Oppose TPP Downloads Folder

June 29th TPP Powerpoint

CWA TPP Jobs Report