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Fri Apr 17, 2015, 01:12 PM

 

Email from barackobama.com about TPA ("fast track") of TPP...


Yesterday, Congress introduced Trade Promotion Authority legislation, also known as TPA or "fast track" -- a series of guidelines for trade agreements like the Trans-Pacific Partnership the Obama administration is currently working on.

When OFA supporters had the chance to ask one of the President's closest advisors about the administration's plans to pursue a progressive trade agreement, we heard a lot of questions about what it would look like, and ​on the process surrounding how it gets done.

Now that Congress has taken a step forward, it's time for an update.

Let's start with the basics: What's the TPA?
Simply put, it's how Congress sets the rules of the road for trade negotiations. They set guidelines that the President and the administration use to negotiate an agreement with other nations.

Trade agreements typically take years to negotiate, and though the TPA is often called "fast track," that's a bit of a misnomer. TPA is a bill like any other (it must go through both the Senate and the House, and then be signed by the President), and it's just the first step in a months-long process of public and congressional review before any deal would be voted on. This has been the trade agreement process for decades. In fact, presidents on both sides of the aisle have been relying on Congress to pass versions of the TPA since 1974.

What happens after TPA?
The rules set by Congress through the TPA guide the framework for the final trade ​agreement -- the President's team will then negotiate the deal on the international stage according to the principles laid out, and if the bill released yesterday is passed, they will bring the finished deal to Congress for an up-or-down vote.

The good news is that this bill ensures progressive values, like enforceable labor and environment standards, will be part of the agreement -- and that the entire process is transparent.

Why should people pay attention now?
It's pretty important for working families and for the economy that we get this right. U.S. exports -- supported by expanding trade -- have contributed nearly a third of our economic growth in the recovery, supporting more than 11.7 million jobs according to the International Trade ​Administration​​, and almost 300,000 small and medium-sized businesses in every state according to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative​.​

Trade agreements are also our best chance to set enforceable labor and environmental protections with new trading partners, instead of letting China set rules that put our workers at a disadvantage.

President Obama has been clear about one big part of this: We can't repeat mistakes of the past, when workers weren't well represented. As he said a few weeks ago, "past trade deals haven't always lived up to the hype. That's why I've made it clear that I won't sign any agreement that doesn't put American workers first."

You can learn more about the President's approach to crafting a progressive trade agreement, and the process behind the TPA in this blog from the White House:

http://my.barackobama.com/About-the-Trade-Promotion-Authority

You probably have friends who have questions about this, too. Please forward this email along -- and stay tuned. We'll keep you updated on what happens from here.

Thanks -- more soon,

Sara

Sara El-Amine
Executive Director
Organizing for Action

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Response to Triana (Original post)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 01:15 PM

1. Fuck the TPA and the TPP and fuck that spin from the WH

 

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Response to Triana (Original post)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 01:17 PM

2. Yes, I am sure Vietnam is reforming the way it farms shrimp right now.

 

Or else they are preparing a suit against labeling shrimp as coming from Vietnam.
One of those.
When I read that a country (actually corporation) can sue if they feel inspection standards are too onerous, and cut into profits, I have to say BS on the TPP.

Since 1974. What a tradition. Probably when the corporations took power.

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Response to djean111 (Reply #2)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 03:03 PM

12. I was never the world's biggest shrimp fan

But between a BP Corexitized Gulf of Mexico and Vietnamese farming practices, it's permanently off my diet.

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Response to IDemo (Reply #12)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 03:06 PM

13. I have not bought shrimp for years. Not that I could ever afford much.

 

Now, even if I am somewhere where there is a great sale - I pick it up, think about it, and then put it back.
When I don't know who to believe, I believe no one.

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Response to Triana (Original post)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 01:20 PM

3. TPA

Totally Planetary Austerity

The answer conceived by the Big Bank Five: eliminate controls on banks in every nation on the planet in one single move. It was as brilliant as it was insanely dangerous. -- Greg Palast
http://www.gregpalast.com/larry-summers-and-the-secret-end-game-memo/

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Response to Triana (Original post)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 01:35 PM

4. Here's what Senator Sherrod Brown had to say about "Fast Track" Rush Through in Hearing this Morning

Sherrod Brown: 12 hours notice for hearing, secret meetings, staff not able to view #TPP. How is this democracy?







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Response to KoKo (Reply #4)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 03:28 PM

14. Nothing to worry about

This agreement is just soooooo AWESOME that they just can't wait to get it in place so all us working families can start enjoying the glorious benefits it will bring!

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Response to Triana (Original post)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 01:35 PM

5. Basically says "We got this -no need to worry your pretty little heads about it."

Whole lotta nothing in content. And saying it's transparent doesn't make it so.

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Response to Triana (Original post)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 01:38 PM

6. Just heard BO say on TV that he's thinking of the ones who brought him...

to the dance - the people.

Really? Is that the story you're going with Mr. President?

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Response to polichick (Reply #6)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 01:56 PM

9. Now we know who really brought him to the dance.

They are who we think they are.

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Response to hay rick (Reply #9)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 02:59 PM

11. True - the continued con is insulting.

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Response to Triana (Original post)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 01:42 PM

7. Anyone know if it includes a currency manipulation clause?

 

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Response to Triana (Original post)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 01:55 PM

8. What's the hurry?

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Response to Triana (Original post)

Fri Apr 17, 2015, 01:57 PM

10. I'd rather the president explained TPP...

...than the legal mechanism he'll use to sneak it past us.

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