Fast Track Trade Advances to the House

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Air Date: June 2, 2015

Host : Jim Schneider

Guest: Rick Manning

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Rick Manning is the president of Americans for Limited Government, a non-partisan organization working to identify, expose and work with Congress and state legislatures to prevent the continued expansion of government.

In late May, the U.S. Senate passed Fast Track Authority for President Obama that relates to trade deals such as the Trans Pacific Partnership. The House is now poised to take up the measure. What is Fast Track and what is the Trans Pacific Partnership and why should we be concerned?

Fast Track would enable President Obama to bring a treaty that he signed to the House and Senate floors. In addition, it would only require a simple majority vote and there would be no possibility to amend it. This is quite different than the way things normally work under Senate rules.

The Trans Pacific Partnership is part of this discussion because according to Rick, President Obama has spent more than 5 years negotiating this 12 nation treaty that covers every aspect of the U.S. economy. This means the TPP is not really a trade deal as it’s being presented as only 5 of the 29 sections deal with trade. The other 24 deal with everything from immigration to labor to climate change and even intellectual property.

The danger of the partnership, beyond its comprehensive nature, is that it’s a living agreement. As such, this means Congress can pass and ratify it, but it can also evolve over time and be changed by President Obama or any future president with no oversight by anyone concerning those modifications.

Why is the contents of the TPP so secretive? Could it be that if the public sees the TPP contents, Fast Track will die because TPP has serious ramifications for American sovereignty? You decide when you review this vital edition of Crosstalk.

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To contact your House member regarding this issue call 202-225-3121 or go to Once there, click on ‘Representatives’ and click on your state to obtain direct numbers to their Washington, D.C., office as well as their district office. (To send an e-mail to your member of Congress)

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