Burning Issues: Explaining The ‘Revolt’ Against the TPP

The 2016 political races are being buffeted by “a transpartisan, nationwide trade revolt” against trade deals that have been rigged to benefit wealthy corporations at the expense of the rest of us, says Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch, in this Burning Issues video.

Wallach has been a leading voice against the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which President Obama is attempting to push through Congress even though both the presumptive Republican and Democratic presidential nominees have come out in opposition, as have key leaders in both parties of Congress.

Wallach explains that previous deals that form the “template” for the 12-nation TPP – such as the Korea-U.S. free trade agreement President Obama signed in 2011 – have had the opposite effect of what White House officials promised, with lost jobs and declining exports, Wallach said.

“A good agreement would get rid of all of the corporate boondoggles that have gotten Super-Glued onto the good name of trade,” such as the investor-state dispute settlement process that allows corporations to sue governments before a tribunal of three private attorneys “to raid our Treasury for any law they don’t like.”

A trade agreement should also encourage competition in areas like pharmaceuticals, instead of discouraging generic equivalents for high-priced brand-name drugs, and would ensure that the United States can ban products that do not meet U.S. safety or labor standards, Wallach says.

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