Statement by CIEL President & CEO Carroll Muffett on the Blocked “Fast Track” Trade Promotion Authority Bill

For Immediate Release
May 12, 2015

Today, Senate Democrats stood up for democracy and the public interest by blocking progress of a bill that would grant fast track trade negotiating authority to the President. Under fast track, environmentally destructive trade deals such as the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) would be rushed through Congress with no oversight or accountability, bypassing the democratic process. Fast Track would also rubber-stamp trade agreements that could slow, stop, or reverse progress on stronger laws for toxic chemicals.

Today’s vote should send a signal to the President about the profound and legitimate public opposition to these trade agreements. But, the battle to defend democracy and the public interest in US trade negotiations is hardly won. As we work to ensure human health, environmental, and labor protections are strong, corporate interests are aggressively lobbying behind closed doors for concessions more favorable to business at the expense of public interests. We must, and will, remain vigilant about how these negotiations are conducted and the possible adverse impacts of dangerous provisions that keep sneaking into trade agreements.