by Celeste Drake
The Trans-Pacific Partnership is a so-called “trade deal” that could cost 448,000 U.S. jobs, suppress U.S. wages, and irreparably weaken our democracy and sovereignty.
Yet U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman is trying to get your member of Congress to vote for it. To win the vote, he is uniting with “Republican-friendly organizations” to win votes from the Republican side of the aisle, while ignoring many Democrats who stand with working families.
If this deal is so great for working people, why are labor unions and many environmental, consumer and human rights organizations united against it, while the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Business Roundtable and the U.S. Fashion Industry Association (representing apparel importers) and other business groups are for it? Can you recall a time when these special interest groups worked hard to create more American jobs and raise our wages? I can’t. So we shouldn’t believe their empty promises this time, either.
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The evidence on corporate-driven trade is in: it fails working families. The United States already is a member of an international trade deal known as the World Trade Organization, and a number of smaller deals called free trade agreements (FTAs). In 2015, the U.S. goods and services trade deficit with the world hit a new record high, $531.5 billion. This figure includes goods trade deficits with WTO partner China ($365.7 billion) and trade deal partners Canada ($14.9 billion), Mexico ($58.4 billion) and South Korea ($28.3 billion).
Trade deficits cost jobs. It’s as simple as that. But Congress is being asked to approve another trade agreement that incorporates the same failed trade rules we already have. Instead of falling for another deficit-increasing, job-killing, wage-cutting trade deal, let’s stand up and fight against it.
Join the fight against TPP today.
Reposted from the AFL-CIO Now.