Quigley Promises Not to Decide on Democracy-Busting TPP

The Trans-Pacific Partnership, which would grant enormous new powers to corporations, is a massive assault on democracy, says Public Citizen's Executive Director Lori Wallach. She has dubbed it “NAFTA on Steroids.” President Obama wants to use Fast Track authority to force a straight up-or-down vote without any amendments on this corporate coup d'etat – a document Congress has been forbidden from seeing. 

You might not have heard about the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, or TPP. That’s because the negotiations and the agreement itself have been shrouded in secrecy, even from the U.S. Congress. Yet the TPP is poised to usher in vast powers for corporations, powers that will override the laws of nations, including the U.S., and bring new corporate rights to undermine environmental and health laws, offshore millions of American jobs, flood the US with untested food products, extend the duration of medical patents, restrict Internet use, and much more.

I support Fair Trade agreements that protect the labor, human rights, economy, environment and domestic industry of partner and recipient nations so that the growth of local industry and agriculture has the advantage over foreign corporate domination. Agreements that protect democracy not crush it. I oppose the TPP because it would further subjugate us to corporate power.

Where does the 5th District incumbent stand on this threat to our jobs, health, environment, and democracy? If you’ve been reading this blog regularly I’ll bet you can guess.

In an effort to combat the TPP threat 151 House Democrats have signed the DeLauro-Miller letter opposing Fast Track and demanding more transparency on the proposed agreement. Mike Quigley is not one of them.  Instead, he has said in a public meeting when questioned on the TPP that he gave the White House his word that he wouldn't make up his mind on the TPP until the White House made a decision, TPP activist Jim Coleman reports.

In other words, Quigley is perfectly happy to give up his constitutional authority to regulate trade. He is unconcerned about an agreement that he has not seen but that would override his own authority to make laws and represent his constituents.

The DeLauro-Miller letter states, “we remain deeply troubled by the continued lack of adequate congressional consultation in many areas of the proposed pact”. And:

… the TPP FTA [Free Trade Agreement] will include binding obligations that touch upon a wide swath of policy matters under the authority of Congress. Beyond traditional tariff issues these include policies related to labor, patent and copyright, land use, food, agriculture and product standards, natural resources, the environment, professional licensing, state-owned enterprises and government procurement policies, as well as financial, healthcare, energy, telecommunications and other service sector regulations.

It goes on to re-assert the constitutional right of Congress to set the terms of trade.

Republicans have also recognized the threat Fast Tracking the TPP represents. Twenty-three of them have signed a letter by Walter Jones (R-NC) saying they do not agree to give their constitutional authority over trade agreements to the executive branch.

Let Mike Quigley know that his shameful unwillingness to stand up for his constituents is unacceptable. I will be in the primary election March 18, 2014. Vote for a progressive Green Party champion willing and able to stand up for the people of the 5th!

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commented 2013-12-03 12:43:03 -0600 · Flag
Congressman Quigley not taking a stand! I would bet be he is holding out for PAC dollars from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee!