Congressman Tim Ryan Blasts the Introduction of Fast Track Trade Promotion Authority

Apr 29, 2015 Issues: Helping Working Families

Congressman Tim Ryan made the following statement today in response to the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives joint introduction of Fast Track Trade Promotion Authority: 

The trade agreements over the last twenty years, beginning with NAFTA, have decimated the middle class in the United States of America. By passing Fast Track, Congress is relinquishing all if its negotiating power and taking away any of our ability to play an active role in making sure this trade agreement works for the American people. It is the responsibility of those elected to Congress to have our ears to the ground and to negotiate on behalf of the interests of our constituents. However, by passing Fast Track we will be giving up our seat at the table and our ability to give our constituents a voice in the debate. Why would we hand over this immense power to the Executive branch? In Northeast, Ohio I have watched as steel mills have closed, I have sat in Union Halls and empathized with families who have lost their jobs due to downsizing, and I have watched communities struggle to recover from a loss of industry. We saw what NAFTA did to our region and across the country, and we saw the rippling affect it had throughout every aspect of our economy. We cannot stand by and allow this Administration to end-run around Congress in order to pass a wide-reaching trade agreement that could prove just as destructive as those that came before it. I stand in staunch opposition to this legislation and I call on the Administration and my Congressional colleagues to reconsider this short-sighted and dangerous trade agreement.