|Demonstrators protest fast track on Capitol Hill Wednesday.|
Levin, the panel's top Democrat, told his fellow committee members:
The TPP negotiators today are not on the right track. In some vital areas, we don't know where the USTR is heading. In other areas, we don't like where they are going. It is simply incorrect to say this TPA puts Congress in the driver's seat. Instead, it puts us in the back seat.
Meanwhile, Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-Texas) said it seemed fast track supporters were speeding forward with little concern about the possible consequences of the legislation. He said there is a real need for trade to benefit all Americans:
The question is not whether we should have more trade, but what the nature of that trade should be.
The House committee, like the Senate Finance Committee Wednesday night, rejected efforts that would have bolstered currency manipulation provisions so other countries can't rise up the costs of U.S. imports while lowering their export prices to Americans. They also pushed aside concerns about language that would allow foreign corporations to sue the U.S. government over laws on the books that they think hurt their company's business.
Both the House and Senate are expected to bring the fast track bill to the floor next month. It's now even more critical that Teamsters and other fair trade advocates let their lawmakers know that fast track is the wrong track for America.