Gabrielle Canon at Mother Jones gives who’s who on supporters and detractors of the TPP, Trans Pacific Partnership. Many of the leading progressives are leaning trade protectionist against the pact because Unions definitely have taken a hit post NAFTA, and we all learned the math of outsourcing the past decade and a half.
I suspect that some of the fears of world trade courts trumping rights in the US are overblown, but I think the other worries bear investigation.
Senior lawmakers introduced bipartisan legislation last week that would let the Obama Administration keep negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a pact that could be the most far-reaching free trade agreement in American history.
Now in its fifth year of negotiations, the TPP is intended to bolster free trade among 12 participating countries and set the tone for future trade deals. Getting it done before campaign politics interfere hinges on the passage of the new legislation, a Trade Promotion Authority bill (a.k.a. “fast track”) that limits congressional participation to a up/down vote on the final deal, rather than opening it up for amendments. The TPA is needed to ensure negotiating partners that their hard-fought agreements won’t be altered at the whims of one politician or another. But some members of Congress, along with various interest groups, insist that the pact needs additional congressional oversight and public approval.
Like most trade deals, the TPP is being negotiated by the administration behind closed doors, and details are scant.