US opponents of the Trans-Pacific Partnership don’t understand how it works


Peace and Freedom

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Anti-Trans Pacific partnership rally in Washington DC

By Michael Schuman

What a fight the White House has had over free trade. Though the US Congress finally passed legislation that grants Barack Obama “fast-track” authority to complete the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)—a massive, 12-nation free-trade agreement stretching from Malaysia to New Zealand to Chile—that came after weeks of rancorous debate that witnessed some of the most influential Democrats part ways with their president.

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Obama has sold the TPP as key to stimulating US growth, creating American jobs and solidifying Washington’s leadership in the global economy. But some politicians aren’t buying it. Free-trade agreements (FTAs), they contend, cost Americans jobs, adding to the trials facing the middle class. “We want a better deal for America’s workers,” insisted Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi in a June 12 address to the House of Representatives.

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There is, however, something the TPP’s opponents don’t understand: the…

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