Newsflash:
Rep. John Conyers Trans Pacific Partnership New Fast-Track Bill Means Higher Trade Deficits and Lost Jobs
Saturday, 11 January 2014 02:13

New Fast-Track Bill Means Higher Trade Deficits and Lost Jobs

Written by  Dave Johnson | Campaign for America's Future

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.

A number of Democrats as well as Republicans in the House have already stated objections to the fast-track process, so the bill faces an uphill battle. But the giant multinational corporations will push very hard to get this.

Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch, said of the new legislation:

“Congress’ willingness to support Fast Track has declined markedly because ‘trade’ agreements have increasingly invaded Congress’ domestic policymaking prerogatives. On top of that, Democratic and GOP presidents alike have consistently ignored the negotiating objectives included in Fast Track, but the way the process is structured, Congress has given away its authority to do anything about it.”

United Steelworkers President Leo Gerard immediately released a statement that began:

“This is the wrong proposal at the wrong time. It is wrong for American workers and will only continue to take us further down the road in the wrong direction. Why on earth would we want to simply continue doing things the old way, when it’s resulted in rising trade deficits, more manufacturing job losses and greater income inequality?

“It’s time for a new approach to trade. Past negotiating objectives, with only minimal changes by the two Chairmen, are being offered as the basis for future trade policies. But today’s trade policies have fueled historic trade deficits and left our trading partners with bags of U.S. dollars and millions of American jobs. More of the same will only yield more outsourced and offshored jobs and shattered dreams.”

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka in a statement said the labor alliance “opposes this legislation in the strongest of terms and will actively work to block its passage.”

2014 marks the 20th anniversary of NAFTA, which was only the first in a series of trade agreements that have undermined millions of middle-class American jobs and weakened our democratic structures. So it is ironic that this year the supporters of that failed model are bringing forward a fast track trade promotion bill to bring us more of the same: more trade deals that strengthen corporate power and CEO profits, while putting downward pressure on wages and opportunities for the rest of us; more outsourced and offshored jobs and more attacks on domestic health and safety regulations.

Note that fast track is not necessary to pass trade agreements. Even without fast track, President Clinton was able to implement more than 130 trade agreements, including granting most-favored-nation status to China. This is all about setting up a process that enables the giant multinational corporations to push through the coming Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement.

Previous trade agreements have enabled the giant multinational corporations to move jobs and factories out of the country, saving on labor and environmental protection costs. This has caused American wages to drop and inequality to rise to terrible levels. These “free-trade” agreements have led to incredible, humongous, enormous trade deficits, draining more than $540 billion of “demand” from our economy in 2012. This is the core reason unemployment is high and the economy is having such trouble recovering.

Imagine if our country’s factories and businesses had an additional $540 billion of orders in 2012. Think about how many people would have been hired to fill those orders, how many factories would be humming, how many suppliers would be prospering. THAT is how to understand the loss of that $540 billion in orders resulting from the trade deficit.

But hey, even though American wages are falling, unemployment is high, job growth is meager and the economy is struggling as a result of these trade agreements, the giant multinational corporations are doing great.

Public Citizen has an action alert out. Click through to “Write Your Representative to Vote ‘No’ on Fast Track Trade Authority.” The Coalition For a Prosperous America, representing “manufacturing, agricultural, worker, consumer and citizen interests,” also has a page you can use to tell Congress to vote against fast-track trade authority.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License.

Link to original article from Campaign for America's Future

Read 6032 times

ERA Legislation in your State

Unratified states Gold - Ratified States Purple

Latest News from the Conyers Campaign

  • Conyers Introduces Legislation to Cancel Disastrous Sequestration
    Conyers Introduces Legislation to Cancel Disastrous Sequestration

    (DETROIT) – Today, Representative John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.) introduced the “Cancel the Sequester Act of 2013.”  This one sentence legislation would repeal the across the board cuts that are scheduled to go into effect on March 1, 2013.  Rep. Conyers issued this statement following introduction of the bill:

    Written on Thursday, 28 February 2013 23:02 Read more...
  • Conyers Reintroduces National Single-Payer Health Care Bill
    Conyers Reintroduces National Single-Payer Health Care Bill

    (WASHINGTON) – Today, Representative John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.) reintroduced H.R. 676, “The Expanded And Improved Medicare For All Act.”  This bill would establish a privately-delivered, publicly-financed universal health care system, where physicians and non-profit health care providers would be in charge of medical decisions -- not insurance companies.

    Written on Thursday, 14 February 2013 18:18 Read more...
  • Victory in Detroit
    Victory in Detroit

    We're thrilled to report that PDA Board Member and friend Congressman John Conyers won his primary election. PDA members pitched in--volunteering, making phone calls, rallying support in the district. We're happy to share in this hard-won victory.

    Written on Thursday, 09 August 2012 16:40 Read more...
  • Obama endorses John Conyers
    Obama endorses John Conyers

    U.S. Rep. John Conyers’ re-election bid got a boost today when President Barack Obama endorsed him, according to a news release from Conyers’ campaign.

    Written on Wednesday, 15 February 2012 01:53 Read more...
  • Biography Rep. John Conyers, Jr.
    Biography Rep. John Conyers, Jr.

    Representative John Conyers, Jr., a Detroit Democrat, was re-elected to represent the 14th Congressional District in November of 2010, to his 24th term in the U.S. House of Representatives. The district covers all of Highland Park and Hamtramck, as well as large portions of Detroit, Dearborn and the Downriver communities of Melvindale, Allen Park, Southgate, Riverview, Trenton, Gibraltar and Grosse Ile.

    Written on Tuesday, 03 January 2012 12:53 Read more...
  • Hundreds rally against possible Detroit takeover
    Hundreds rally against possible Detroit takeover Hundreds of people gathered at a Detroit church to voice their opposition to the possibility that the state could take over the city's government.
    Written on Tuesday, 03 January 2012 12:43 Read more...
  • Conyers Opposes House GOP Effort to Derail Relief for Workers, Seniors, and the Unemployed
    Conyers Opposes House GOP Effort to Derail Relief for Workers, Seniors, and the Unemployed Today, Representative John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.) released the following statement in response to House Republican opposition to H.R. 3630 – the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2011.
    Written on Monday, 02 January 2012 23:14 Read more...

PDA Radio

Listen "Live" Wednesday, 9/17/2014 @ 8pm
RevYearwood

Rev. Lennox Yearwood
Special Guest Bill McKibben

Call In Number 347-202-0385

Sign the ERA Petition

ERADemandButton

On Friday, September 12th more than 150 activists will go to DC and Demand that their Senators and Representatives support removing the ratification deadline from the ERA (SJ Res 15 and HJ Res 113)

Button-SignERAPetition

Lori Wallach on the TPP from PDA Progressive Roundtable

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

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