As Co-Chair of the Progressive Caucus, I know that without clear, congressional oversight, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will become another job-killing trade agreement that benefits big corporations at the expense of everyone else.
Congress must fully consider the impacts the TPP will have on working Americans. We cannot afford to rush through another NAFTA that values corporate profits above families. That’s why I was so glad to receive Charles’ email on Tuesday, copied below, urging DFA members to sign the petition against fast-track trade authority for the TPP.
It’s only a matter of time before an army of corporate lobbyists hits the halls of the Capitol. But our numbers can beat their dollars every time.
Your voice is critical. In 2002, 2 votes out of 435 made the difference between victory and defeat for fast-track authority for smaller trade deals. You can help us save American jobs by speaking up today.
With so much at stake, Congress can’t give away its right to advocate for working families.
Thanks for all you do.
Rep. Keith Ellison (D, MN-05)
Co-Chair, Congressional Progressive Caucus
———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Charles Chamberlain, Democracy for America
Date: Tue, Jan 14, 2014 at 8:47 AM
Subject: The trade deal they don’t want you to see
Dear Supporter —
At this moment, the United States and 11 other countries are, with the help of over 600 corporate “advisors,” secretly negotiating a massive, controversial trade deal called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (or TPP). If passed, the TPP, which is often called “NAFTA on Steroids,” would be the largest “free trade” agreement ever made.
Let me be as clear as I can: The TPP will be an unmitigated disaster for working families.
Under the TPP, it will become even easier to offshore both public and private sector American jobs, food safety standards will be weakened, drug prices will rise, and the rights and powers of the same Wall Street firms who wrecked our economy will be expanded. And that’s before we even start talking about the erosion of wages, benefits and union rights we’ve seen happen with big trade agreements before.
The good news? Right now, we have a unique opportunity to stop the TPP by preventing the passage of so-called “fast-track trade authority,” which would allow the President to ram the trade agreement through Congress without any amendments or a robust public discussion.
By giving the President “fast track trade authority,” Congress gives up its special authority to make certain that our trade policy works for everyone, not just the powerful corporations and business interests with a seat at the negotiating table.
Even worse, TPP negotiations have been shrouded in secrecy, with the little we do know about the deal coming from just a handful of leaked chapters of the agreement. As a result, if Congress approves “fast track authority” for the TPP, it will be giving away its constitutionally-protected role in trade negotiations without even knowing what’s in the final deal — no amendments, no robust debate, and little chance for the public to weigh in.
Granting “fast track authority” for the TPP would give all that up — give up our chance to make sure that our voice is heard in Washington — for a massive “free trade” deal that we already know is bad for working families.
But, if we act quickly, we can stop “fast track” and end the TPP before it even starts.
Thanks for all you do,
Executive Director, Democracy for America