Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

'Disappointed' in Obama, Sanders Calls on Top Dems to Drop Lame Duck TPP Push

TPP "will cost American jobs, harm the environment, increase the cost of prescription drugs, and threaten our ability to protect public health"

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is calling on Democratic Congressional leadership to publicly oppose a "lame-duck" vote on the TPP. (Photo: SumOfUs/flickr/cc)

Hillary Clinton may not have heeded progressives' call to clearly say she'll urge the White House and her fellow party members to oppose a "lame-duck" vote on the Trans Pacific Partnership, but Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has done just that, calling on Democratic Congressional leadership to publicly oppose a post-Election Day vote on the "job-killing trade deal."

"In my view, it is now time for the leadership of the Democratic Party​ in the Senate and the House to join Secretary Clinton and​ go on the record in opposition to holding a vote on this job-killing trade deal during the lame-duck session of Congress and beyond." —Sen. Bernie SandersSanders' statement, issued Friday, comes as the Obama administration continues its push to get the TPP passed this year.

On Friday, as Politico reports, the White House sent lawmakers a draft, as required by "fast track" or trade promotion authority, that "describes the major steps the administration will take to implement any changes to U.S. law required by the deal." That notification comes a week after Obama said he expected Congress to pass the deal in the lame duck session.

Sanders said in his statement that he was "disappointed by the president's decision to continue pushing forward on the disastrous Trans Pacific Partnership trade agreement that will cost American jobs, harm the environment, increase the cost of prescription drugs, and threaten our ability to protect public health."

"In my view, it is now time for the leadership of the Democratic Party​ in the Senate and the House to join Secretary Clinton and​ go on the record in opposition to holding a vote on this job-killing trade deal during the lame-duck session of Congress and beyond," he added.

Adam Green, co-founder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, a group that has campaigned against the deal, said the president's "continued insistence on holding a lame-duck vote on the TPP is hurting Democratic chances of success this November—and helping Donald Trump's chances with blue collar voters."

Regarding the Democratic presidential nominee's stance, however, not all progressives are convinced that's she's come out forcefully enough against the TPP, specifically on the charge to take a leadership position to help stop the deal.

In an economic policy speech on Thursday, Clinton said, "I will stop any trade deal that kills jobs or holds down wages—including the Trans Pacific Partnership. I oppose it now, I'll oppose it after the election, and I'll oppose it as President."

With those words, said Green, Clinton "signaled she will personally work to kill the corporate-written TPP if it comes up after the election in an unaccountable lame-duck Congress."

Democracy for America (DFA) praised what the group called the "strongest [opposition to the deal] we've heard from her to date," referring to her speech on Thursday, but added that "it's now more important than ever that the country and President Obama hear specifically from Secretary Clinton that a vote on the job-killing TPP during a lame duck session of Congress must not happen."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.
We need your help.

Support progressive journalism.

Common Dreams is not your average news site. We don't survive on clicks or advertising dollars. We rely entirely on your support. And without it, our independent progressive journalism simply wouldn’t exist. Every gift of every amount matters.

Join the fight and support our common dreams today.

'The Filibuster Must Go': Senate GOP Blocks Debate on Voting Rights Bill

"Democrats in the Senate can have a functional democracy or the filibuster, but not both."

Jessica Corbett, staff writer ·


Key Senate Democrat Applauded for Manifesto on Reducing Drug Costs

"Sen. Wyden's drug pricing principles are a road map for taking on the greed of pharmaceutical corporations and lowering drug prices for all Americans."

Jessica Corbett, staff writer ·



Coalition of 200+ Groups Call for Permanent End to 'Neocolonialist' Global Gag Rule

"The global community deserves true partnership from the U.S., but the threat that this destructive policy could reemerge undermines relationships and harms people around the globe."

Julia Conley, staff writer ·


Social Cost of Emissions: 'One of the Most Important Numbers That No One Has Ever Heard Of'

An analysis for Friends of the Earth finds the social cost of CO2 calculates to at least 15 times the Biden administration's current figure, which is set to be finalized by early next year.

Jessica Corbett, staff writer ·