Seattle votes to oppose fast-track of Trans-Pacific Partnership

People hold up a signs supporting a city of Seattle resolution against the fast track consideration of the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership. (Photo courtesy the Washington Fair Trade Coalition.)
People hold up a signs supporting a city of Seattle resolution against the fast track consideration of the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership. (Photo courtesy the Washington Fair Trade Coalition.)

The city of Seattle unanimously approved a resolution Monday opposing the fast-track consideration of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and expressing concerns about aspects of the multi-national deal.

Seattle councilmembers Mike O’Brien and Kshama Sawant co-sponsored the resolution criticizing the federal pact. The resolution also expressed support for local and national policies protecting workers and the environment. You can read the resolution in full on the city of Seattle website.

The federal TPP trade deal would bind the United States in a NAFTA-like treaty with several Pacific Rim nations, including Australia, Brunei, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam. Critics of TPP say it would put too much power in the hands of business interests, possibly compromising local and federal laws.

President Barack Obama seeks fast-track trade promotion authority, which would give his administration more power to negotiate TPP and could limit Congressional oversight over the agreement.

O’Brien said in a prepared statement released by the city, “I am pro-trade. And I believe the U.S. can negotiate truly progressive trade deals. But I oppose Fast Track for the TPP because Seattle has some of the highest environmental and labor standards in the country, and it is critical that multinational corporations do not have the power to undermine our laws or values.”

Sawant said, “Few things counterpose the interests of multinational corporations to the interests of workers, the environment, and democracy as sharply as trade deals like NAFTA and the Trans-Pacific Partnership. It has been just over a year since my office first drafted a resolution opposing the TPP. Today, I am excited to support environmental activists, labor unions and social justice organizations that have brought to light what big business always intended to be a secret trade treaty.”

You can read more about the Trans-Pacific Partnership on The Seattle Globalist.

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