In yet another power grab by the executive branch of the federal government...
Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) said to Congress, “The American people don’t trust you” on Obamatrade deal.
On the issue of fast-track trade authority for President Obama, Sessions explained that the authority would be dangerous and would suspend Congress’s powers for the next six years, as Congress would only get an up or down vote on Obama’s trade negotiations and would not be allowed to make any amendments.
Sessions explained how fast-track authority throws off the balance of powers between the legislative and executive branch:
Under the fast-track procedure, the President—not Congress—writes implementing legislation for any yet-unseen global trade pact. That legislation, no matter its contents, cannot be amended in any fashion. No individual Member of Congress can alter any line of text, or remove a single provision that violates the will or intent of Congress. That legislation, once called up, is guaranteed a speedy path forward—only 20 hours of debate—and the vote threshold is lowered to a simple majority. No matter how far-reaching the global trade agreement, Congress cannot subject it to the 60 votes applied to important legislation or the 67 votes applied to treaties. Congress will have preapproved swift consideration of sweeping global pacts years before their text has been seen by a single member of this body.
In a letter to President Obama, Sessions called for him to explain how he plans to use his fast-track authority and how American workers will be impacted by his decisions.
Obama did not issue answer nor respond to Sessions’ letter. “And yet they want us to shut off debate,” Sessions responded.
“For too long, the United States has entered into trade deals on the promise of economic bounty, only to see workers impoverished and industries disappear,” Sessions said.