Fast Track: Don’t Give Up Our Sovereignty!
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy has announced there will be a vote on Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), H.R.1314, also called fast-track, THIS FRIDAY. Fast-track authority is essential for the future passage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a massive international trade deal involving twelve countries.
Members of Congress are told that fast-track will allow them to influence what’s in the TPP, but the deal has already been in the works for six years. They can only read it by visiting a secure location in the Capitol, cannot take notes with them, and can only be accompanied by staffers with security clearances. Few Members have bothered to read the agreement, even as they prepare to give President Obama enormous power to finish it.
Two Members who have read it are Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) and Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA), and they were alarmed by the contents. In a joint statement, Sen. Sessions and Rep. Hunter slam the Obama administration for its secrecy. They reveal that the TPP would create a new commission that could issue regulations binding member nations:
TPP calls for the formation of a permanent political and economic union known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership Commission, which will have the power to issue regulations impacting not only trade but immigration, the environment, labor, and commerce. This global union would be able to add new member countries and, because TPP is a ‘living agreement,’ it will be able to change the agreement after its ratification.
When the Senate voted on fast-track, many Senators were unaware that they were voting to authorize the President to form a new transnational governance structure. The Trans-Pacific Partnership resembles a treaty more than a trade deal.
By adopting fast-track, Congress would be formally authorizing the President to finalize the creation of this Pacific Union and will have surrendered its legislative prerogatives.
In its rush to approve these new powers for the President, Congress risks the jobs, wages, rights, and sovereignty of U.S. citizens. President Obama demands we give him this new authority, yet he refuses to answer even the most basic questions about it. What we do know is that whatever structure the President creates with these new powers-we are told that the plan is ‘the most progressive in history’-it will endure long after he has left office.
You can read the entirety of the statement by Sen. Sessions and Rep. Hunter here.
Please CALL YOUR REPRESENTATIVE and let him or her know you are opposed to giving President Obama Fast Track authority. (click Take Action below — enter your information — then click Place Call. You will be prompted with the Representative’s Capitol number, and a suggested message).
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