Back room trade deals benefit big corporations at the expense of working people. We need your help demanding that U.S. officials move the Trans-Pacific Free Trade Agreement negotiations into the light of day.
The Trans-Pacific Free Trade Agreement is a massive new trade deal for the Pacific Rim. After eleven major rounds of negotiations, the United States has reportedly introduced proposals for most, if not all, of an estimated 26 separate chapters for this pact — proposals that will likely affect jobs, wages, agriculture, migration, consumer safety, the environment, financial regulations, internet freedom, access to medicine, indigenous rights, public procurement and more in our communities and throughout the world.
Despite the far-reaching nature of the Trans-Pacific FTA, the U.S. Trade Representative has refused to release any of its negotiating proposals for public scrutiny. One corporate trade attorney with decades of experience in international trade negotiations recently gloated that, “This is the least transparent trade negotiation I have ever seen.” That isn’t right and has to change.
What’s even worse, however, is that while you, I and the majority of Americans are barred from knowing what’s taking place in the Trans-Pacific FTA negotiations, approximately 600 corporate lobbyists have been named “cleared advisors,” giving them regular access to the negotiating documents and negotiators.
This type of back-room deal making is unacceptable in a democracy, and it is even outside of the norm for international trade negotiations. Even the World Trade Organization (WTO) publishes its draft negotiating proposals online for public review and comment.
Please sign our online petition urging U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk to publicly release the negotiating proposals for the Trans-Pacific FTA. You can take further action by downloading a PDF of the petition and circulating it among your friends, co-workers and colleagues. The petitions will be delivered to U.S. trade negotiators prior to the start of the next negotiating round, widely rumored to take place in the United States in May.
You deserve the right to know what U.S. trade negotiators are negotiating in your name. Please take action now.
Tim Robertson, director
California Fair Trade Coalition
Job-killing Free Trade Agreements Pass with record Democratic Opposition
On Wednesday, October 12, Congress ratified the three pending Free Trade Agreements with Colombia, Korea, and Panama. Thanks to the great work done in California and around the country, the deals faced unprecedented opposition from Democratic Members of Congress, shocking considering the deals were being pushed by a sitting Democratic President.
In California, the results were even more pronounced with a higher percentage of Democrats voting against each deal than Dems nationwide. A full 11 seats that voted for the Peru FTA (the last major trade vote) switched to oppose the largest current deal, the Korea FTA.
Results among the most recently elected Members of Congress were even more stark, with all seven who were making their first or second major trade vote opposing all three deals. Further, the Bay Area was strongly opposed, with 9 of 11 Reps opposing all three deals and all 11 opposing the Colombia FTA.
See below for how you Representative voted, and check here for a full breakdown.
Thanks to the following Reps!
The following Members of Congress voted against all three job-killing FTAs!
Rep. Joe Baca Rep. Karen Bass Rep. Lois Capps Rep. Judy Chu Rep. Bob Filner Rep. John Garamendi Rep. Janice Hahn Rep. Mike Honda Rep. Barbara Lee Rep. Zoe Lofgren Rep. Jerry McNerney Rep. George Miller Rep. Janet Napolitano Rep. Laura Richardson Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard Rep. Linda Sanchez Rep. Brad Sherman Rep. Jackie Speier Rep. Pete Stark Rep. Maxine Waters Rep. Lynn Woolsey
Spanks to the following Reps!
These Reps. voted for all three job-killing FTAs :(. They need to hear from you.
Rep. Howard Berman Rep. Jim Costa Rep. Susan Davis All Republicans except for Hunter and Rohrabacher
And these Reps. voted for two of the three:
Rep. Becerra Rep. Cardoza Rep. Eshoo Rep. Farr Rep. Hunter Rep. Matsui Rep. Pelosi Rep. Rohrabacher Rep. Schiff
Rep. Loretta Sanchez (Korea) and Henry Waxman (Panama) each voted for one deal. For a full break down of how California Members of Congress voted, click here.
For information on the Colombia-U.S. FTA, go here.
See statements opposing the Korea-U.S. FTA here.
For more info on the Korea-U.S. FTA, click here.
For California-based Korea-U.S. FTA info, click here.
For more info on the Panama-U.S. FTA, click here.
The CFTC brings together a diverse array of organizations and individuals including labor, environmental, farm, fair trade business, and human rights groups to educate California citizens, lawmakers, and the media about the devastating consequences of current U.S. trade policies, while promoting viable alternatives for creating new rules for globalization.