Tag: Public Citizen USA

Congressional Concerns about TPP and NZ

Press Release – Public Citizen USA New Zealand PMs Visit to U.S. Capital Comes Amid Congressional Concerns about TPPJune 18, 2014 New Zealand PM’s Visit to U.S. Capital Comes Amid Congressional Concerns about TPP Note: This week, New Zealand Prime Minister John Key Abbott meets President Barack Obama in Washington. Among topics to be discussed are the stalled negotiations over the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The controversial “free trade” agreement, which includes the United States, New Zealand and 10 other nations, was to have been completed in 2013. As opposition to TPP has grown in the United States, the Congress has refused to grant Obama Fast Track trade authority for the pact. Following are statements on the TPP from Democratic and Republican members of Congress: Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) Contact: Sara Lonardo (202) 225-3661 or Sara.Lonardo@mail.house.gov “The majority of Americans are tired of flawed trade deals that ship jobs overseas and weaken consumer protections. Congress has no appetite to provide the Administration with fast track authority to ram through another bad trade deal that only expands the failed trade policies of the past. Instead of fast tracking another bad trade deal, we should be focused on policies that support the middle class and provide better opportunities for those striving to join the middle class. The TPP will include binding obligations that touch upon a wide swath of policy matters [constitutionally] under...

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Obama’s State of the Union Speech Dilemma

Press Release – Public Citizen USA Obamas State of the Union Speech Dilemma: Calling on Congress to Fast Track the Trans-Pacific Partnership Will Further Alienate Congressional Democrats and Fuel Ire among Conservative RepublicansJanuary 27, 2014 Obama’s State of the Union Speech Dilemma: Calling on Congress to “Fast Track” the Trans-Pacific Partnership Will Further Alienate Congressional Democrats and Fuel Ire among Conservative Republicans During his annual “State of the Union” address before a joint session of Congress on January 28 at 9:00 PM Washington time, President Obama is expected to highlight his major trade initiatives. This includes the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal, a massive pact between the U.S. and 11 Asian and Latin American nations. The business lobby is pushing hard for Obama to use the speech to call on Congress to pass Fast Track trade authority for the TPP in the face of growing opposition in Congress and the U.S. public. The priority Obama does or does not give to Fast Track in the speech will be revealing. Fast Track proponents and opponents alike believe that Obama must make a significant personal investment in pushing Congress to approve the controversial procedure. The speech is one of Obama’s key opportunities to signal to Congress and the public that TPP and Fast Track to pass it are personal priorities. Congressional opposition to TPP is growing and for several decades Democratic and...

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Legislation to Provide Fast Track Trade Authority introduced

Press Release – Public Citizen USA Legislation to Provide Fast Track Trade Authority for President Obama Finally Introduced, But Can It Pass? Considerable House Opposition on Day One, Tight Calendar in Election Year WASHINGTON, D.C. Legislation introduced today by U.S. Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) … Legislation to Provide Fast Track Trade Authority for President Obama Finally Introduced, But Can It Pass? Considerable House Opposition on Day One, Tight Calendar in Election Year WASHINGTON, D.C. – Legislation introduced today by U.S. Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and U.S. Rep. Dave Camp (R-Mich.), which would revive the controversial Fast Track trade authority, faces long odds for approval in the 113th Congress, Public Citizen said today. Both Democratic and Republican presidents have struggled to persuade the U.S. Congress to delegate its constitutional trade authority via the Nixon-era Fast Track scheme. Fast Track has been in effect for only five years (2002-2007) of the 18 years since passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the agreement that created the World Trade Organization (WTO). With a large bloc of Democrats and Republicans in the House of Representatives already having announced opposition to the old Fast Track process at the heart of Camp-Baucus bill, the prospects are limited for the Obama administration to secure passage in the first half of 2014 before lawmakers’ attention turns to midterm elections. In November 2014, the entire...

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151 House Democrats & GOP Oppose ‘Fast Track’ Authority

Press Release – Public Citizen USA A letter sent today to President Barack Obama opposing Fast Track authority, signed by 151 House Democrats, signals the end of a controversial Nixon-era procedure used to railroad contentious trade pacts through Congress. Obama has asked Congress to …In Letters to Obama, 151 House Democrats, Bloc of GOP Announce Opposition to ‘Fast Track’ Trade Authority Mounting Concerns About Possible Trans-Pacific Partnership Unite Members Across Party Lines Against Abdicating Congressional Authority Over Trade Nov. 13, 2013 WASHINGTON, D.C. – A letter sent today to President Barack Obama opposing Fast Track authority, signed by 151 House Democrats, signals the end of a controversial Nixon-era procedure used to railroad contentious trade pacts through Congress. Obama has asked Congress to delegate to him its constitutional trade authority via Fast Track for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and other pacts. The signers of the letter show the breadth and depth of Democratic House opposition to Fast Track. Signers include: – 18 of 21 full committee ranking members and 72 subcommittee ranking members; – Leadership members including Assistant Democratic Leader Jim Clyburn; Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chair Steve Israel; Steering and Policy Committee Co-Chairs Rosa DeLauro and Rob Andrews; and 35 of 48 Democratic Steering and Policy Committee members; – 19 of the short list of Democrats who voted for the 2011 U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement; – 26 of the...

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Controversial Trade Pact Text Leaked

Press Release – Public Citizen USA After Two Years of Closed-Door Negotiations, Trans-Pacific Partnership Text Replicates Alarming Bush Trade Pact Terms That Obama Opposed as Candidate, and WorseFor Immediate Release: June 13, 2012 Controversial Trade Pact Text Leaked, Shows U.S. Trade Officials Have Agreed to Terms That Undermine Obama Domestic Agenda After Two Years of Closed-Door Negotiations, Trans-Pacific Partnership Text Replicates Alarming Bush Trade Pact Terms That Obama Opposed as Candidate, and Worse WASHINGTON, D.C.– A leak today of one of the most controversial chapters of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) reveals that extreme provisions have been agreed to by U.S. officials, providing a stark warning about the dangers of “trade” negotiations occurring under conditions of extreme secrecy without press, public or policymaker oversight, Public Citizen said. “The outrageous stuff in this leaked text may well be why U.S. trade officials have been so extremely secretive about these past two years of TPP negotiations,” said Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch. “Via closed-door negotiations, U.S. officials are rewriting swaths of U.S. law that have nothing to do with trade and in a move that will infuriate left and right alike have agreed to submit the U.S. government to the jurisdiction of foreign tribunals that can order unlimited payments of our tax dollars to foreign corporations that don’t want to comply with the same laws our domestic firms...

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