President Obama visits Capitol Hill to save TPP trade deal

In an attempt to rally support for the unpopular Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal President Barack Obama went to Capitol Hill to meet with House Democrats on Friday.

The President is seeking to get fast-track authority from the legislative branch, so that the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal can be passed with a simple yes or no vote, without being really read by legislators and without amendments being put forward.

The Senate approved fast-track legislation at the end of May.

A vast majority of House Democrats, 168, are in opposition to the bill and a rumored 124 Republicans also are against it.

Some House Democrats were not impressed with the President’s eleventh hour pleas to save the bill.

“The president tried to both guilt people and impugn their integrity. I was insulted,” said Rep. Peter Defazio (D-Ore.).

The fight over TPP has split the Democratic Party, with some like Rep. Ron Kind (D-Wis.) fighting in favor of it, against a majority of Democrats in the House and Senate.

“Our rules, no rules or China’s rules — it can’t be made any simpler than that,” said Kind in favor of the fast-tracking bill.

Democrats like Elizabeth Warren, who oppose fast-tracking TPP, say that the President is pushing to get the trade deal past quickly, because if Americans had the time to look at it, they would be opposed.

“I actually have had supporters of the deal say to me, ‘They have to be secret, because if the American people knew what was actually in them, they would be opposed,” Warren said.

A vote on fast-tracking TPP will be made on Friday.


[CNN] [Electronic Frontier Foundation]


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