TPP protesters visit office of Rep Eli Cummins in Baltimore

President Obama has explicitly said he will not permit the Democratic Party platform to take a position against the TPP trade deal. In response, on the 7th of July fair trade protesters showed up at the offices of Representative Elijah Cummins, who chairs the Democratic Party’s platform committee. Elijah Cummins has said before he opposes the TPP and has repeatedly voted against TPP related bills including Obama’s treasured “fast-track” bill last year. The protesters were there to say they’ve got his back and are asking him to stand up to bullying from the Obama administration and ensure that the party platform opposes the TPP trade deal.

Surveys have found voters who believe the TPP will outsource or otherwise destroy US jobs outnumber those who think it will somehow create more jobs by as much as 2-1. Trump is trying to ride that bandwagon with his claims to oppose trade deals even though he himself is notorious for outsourcing in his business ventures. That being so, a pledge to oppose the TPP backed by action could be a prerequisite to the Democrats being competitive in the 2016 election. Many say they absolutely do not trust Hillery Clinton’s claims to oppose the TPP, as she was one of its original proponents and has been a “free trader” all her political life. It was under the adminstration of her husband Bill Clinton that the Battle of Seattle was fought to stop ugly expansions of the power of the WTO back on Nov 30, 1999.

The failed “Doha Round” of trade talks included the same kind of investor lawsuits, pro-GMO food requiremnts, seed and drug patents etc that the TPP and related but unfinished TTIP “Euro-NAFTA” plus the TISA “Trade in Services” agreements would put into place. The TISA and TTIP deals are now much less likely to ever be finished due to the fallout of “Brexit,” the British vote to leave the European Union, effectively seceding from one of the global trade blocs in question and calling its future as a whole into question. There is talk of France and other countries following-and of Scotland and Ireland seceding from the UK to rejoin the EU. In this chaos, the TPP may be the only chance Wall Street has to restart the global “race to the bottom” that has made the few so rich at the expense of almost everyone else. It’s no wonder so few voters want the TPP-and that Obama has to resort to bullying his own party while allying himself with elements of the GOP to get it.

Video from the TPP protest at rep Elijah Cummings’ office in Baltimore


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