Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) is speaking out against the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The Vermont Senator listed ten ways that the TPP would harm working families.
In a statement, Sanders said,
The Trans-Pacific Partnership is a disastrous trade agreement designed to protect the interests of the largest multi-national corporations at the expense of workers, consumers, the environment and the foundations of American democracy. It will also negatively impact some of the poorest people in the world.
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The TPP is a treaty that has been written behind closed doors by the corporate world. Incredibly, while Wall Street, the pharmaceutical industry and major media companies have full knowledge as to what is in this treaty, the American people and members of Congress do not. They have been locked out of the process.
Let’s be clear: the TPP is much more than a “free trade” agreement. It is part of a global race to the bottom to boost the profits of large corporations and Wall Street by outsourcing jobs; undercutting worker rights; dismantling labor, environmental, health, food safety and financial laws; and allowing corporations to challenge our laws in international tribunals rather than our own court system. If TPP was such a good deal for America, the administration should have the courage to show the American people exactly what is in this deal, instead of keeping the content of the TPP a secret.
Sanders also listed ten ways that the TPP with harm American workers:
1. TPP will allow corporations to outsource even more jobs overseas.
2. U.S. sovereignty will be undermined by giving corporations the right to challenge our laws
before international tribunals.
3. Wages, benefits, and collective bargaining will be threatened.
4. Our ability to protect the environment will be undermined.
5. Food Safety Standards will be threatened.
6. Buy America laws could come to an end.
7. Prescription drug prices will increase, access to life saving drugs will decrease, and the profits of
drug companies will go up.
8. Wall Street would benefit at the expense of everyone else.
9. The TPP would reward authoritarian regimes like Vietnam that systematically violate human
10. The TPP has no expiration date, making it virtually impossible to repeal.
The TPP is in direct conflict with the goal of rebuilding the middle class. TPP won’t create better jobs. It will export more jobs. Americans workers have been through this situation on a smaller scale with NAFTA. The American manufacturing sector has never recovered from NAFTA. There is a reason congressional Republicans are salivating at the chance to fast track TPP.
Wall Street and corporate America will benefit from the TPP while American workers will continue to suffer. The TPP and other trade agreements of their ilk undermine workers’ rights and the labor movement. Opposition to the TPP isn’t a liberal or a conservative issue. It is a trade agreement for the benefit of corporations at the expense of everyone else.
Heading into 2015, the fight over the TPP is looming large over the future of America’s workers.
Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association