Jeff Sessions: Kill the 'Anti-Democratic' Trans-Pacific Partnership in the Crib, Repeal Fast-Track Authority Now

November 10, 2015


Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Immigration and the National Interest, is calling for the immediate destruction of the 5,554-page Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trans-global trade deal introduced on Thursday.

[ by Matthew Boyle | November 5, 2015 | Breitbart ]

“The text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership runs 5,554 pages,” Sessions said in a statement provided to Breitbart News.

This is, by definition, anti-democratic. No individual American has the resources to ensure his or her economic and political interests are safeguarded within this vast global regulatory structure. The predictable and surely desired result of the TPP is to put greater distance between the governed and those who govern. It puts those who make the rules out of reach of those who live under them, empowering unelected regulators who cannot be recalled or voted out of office. In turn, it diminishes the power of the people’s bulwark: their constitutionally-formed Congress.

In the next part of the detailed statement calling for the TPP’s annihilation, Sessions walks through several troubling rules and regulations contained throughout its thousands of pages.

Among the TPP’s endless pages are rules for labor, environment, immigration and every aspect of global commerce – and a new international regulatory structure to promulgate, implement, and enforce these rules,” Sessions said. “This new structure is known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership Commission – a Pacific Union – which meets, appoints unelected bureaucrats, adopts rules, and changes the agreement after adoption.

Sessions added that the text of this deal—which is actually bigger than Obamacare and the Senate “Gang of Eight” amnesty bill combined—“confirms” Americans’ “fears” about it, specifically the creation of a new global governance structure similar to the European Union.

Sessions says:

“The text of the TPP confirms our fears, plainly asserting: ‘The Parties hereby establish a Trans-Pacific Partnership Commission which shall meet at the level of Ministers or senior officials, as mutually determined by the Parties,’ and that ‘the Commission shall’:

·       ‘consider any matter relating to the implementation or operation of this Agreement’;

·       ‘consider any proposal to amend or modify this Agreement’;

·       ‘supervise the work of all committees and working groups established under this Agreement’;

·       ‘merge or dissolve any subsidiary bodies established under this Agreement in order to improve the functioning of this Agreement’;

·       ‘seek the advice of non-governmental persons or groups on any matter falling within the Commission’s functions’; and

·       ‘take such other action as the Parties may agree’.

Further, the text explains that ‘the Commission shall take into account’:

·       ‘the work of all committees, working groups and any other subsidiary bodies established under this Agreement’;

·       ‘relevant developments in international fora’; and

·       ‘input from non-governmental persons or groups of the Parties’.

Sessions goes on to note that the new global governance structure is “open-ended” and has no bounds.

Sessions says:

This global governance authority is open-ended: “The Commission and any subsidiary body established under this Agreement may establish rules of procedures for the conduct of its work.”  It covers everything from the movement of foreign nationals: “No Party shall adopt or maintain…measures that impose limitations on the total number of natural persons that may be employed in a particular service sector. . . in the form of numerical quotas or the requirement of an economic needs test”; to climate regulation: “The Parties acknowledge that transition to a low emissions economy requires collective action.”

Sessions compares the enormous size of the deal to Jonathan Swift’s epic novel, Gulliver’s Travels, and argues that Americans are elevating third world bureaucrats to their level in an unfair way that empowers the elites of the world—effects on ordinary people be damned.

“These 5,554 pages are like the Lilliputians binding down Gulliver,” Sessions said.

They will enmesh our great country, and economy, in a global commission where bureaucrats from Brunei have the same vote as the United States. Clearly, powerful forces will have their voices heard and find ways to profit immensely from this conglomeration. But what of everyday wage-earning Americans? By nearly a 5:1 margin, they believe such deals reduce wages – not increase them.  Because this deal lacks currency protections, it will further the bleeding of U.S. manufacturing jobs overseas, allowing our mercantilist trading partners to take advantage of our continued refusal to protect our own workers.

Sessions said this isn’t just a “trade agreement” or even a full-fledged treaty. It’s the creation of a new global governing structure akin to the European Union—one that cedes U.S. sovereignty to a yet-to-be-created international governing body.

“At bottom, this is not a mere trade agreement,” Sessions said. “It bears the hallmarks of a nascent European Union. It is another step towards a world where people, goods, and services can travel freely across international boundaries – and a world where those boundaries mean less and less every day.”

Sessions also called for the immediate repeal of Trade Promotion Authority (TPA)—or fast track—which will, if this deal follows the fast track barely approved earlier this year, grease the skids ensuring its passage. Senators are powerless to stop the massive deal if the deal is on the fast-track.

Yet, because Fast-Track – or so-called Trade Promotion Authority – was adopted (without a single vote to spare), we cannot amend this deal, we cannot filibuster this deal, and we cannot subject it to the two-thirds treaty vote,” Sessions said. “That is why I am calling today on our leaders to take the TPP off of the Fast-Track. The vote should be held under regular Senate and Constitutional order, and it should be held when voters can hold their lawmakers accountable – not during an unaccountable lame duck session.

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  • Jeff Sessions
    United States Senator
    326 Russell Senate Office Building
    Washington, DC 20510

    November 20, 2015

    Dear Senator Sessions,

    Thank you for your eloquent opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership treaty, especially your objections to offshoring our national and popular sovereignty to a Trans-Pacific Commission that treaty would create. Of course that is all just a logical extension of how the last 2 decades of America’s membership in the World Trade Organization (WTO) and our accumulating Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) are offshoring not just our domestic industries and jobs but our sovereignty as well. The body of FTAs and WTO treaty law is turned into a body of federal statutory law which is turned into a body of federal regulations. The negotiations writing these treaties are not transparent to the Congress, and so much less to the American people. Then Congress, through “Fast Track,” has its hands tied from proposing any amendments or from even having open-ended deliberations!

    We are proposing to you a plan (including model legislation) that will cut through it all and restore both our sovereignty and our prosperity. Yes it is possible!

    I have been working under the direction of Ken Davis, who left his post as VP-CFO of IBM Inc. to become Assistant Secretary of Commerce under Richard Nixon. Mr. Davis resigned from that post in 1970, in protest against the move away from protecting our domestic industries and workers. He has maintained a deep interest ever since in the effects of trade policy on the American national interest, including our manufacturing capacity, workers, and military supply chains —and now our sovereignty itself. Ken and I founded Balanced Trade Associates almost 3 years ago. Ken is now our Director Emeritus, and our Executive Director is John Barto, who is also President of Ansonia Copper & Brass, Inc.

    We agree with you that national sovereignty is a fundamental principle that must not be eclipsed by global governance, and we agree with you that restoring our constitutional republic against the off-shoring of our sovereignty is as important as restoring our off-shored industries, jobs and military supply chains.

    The economic results of these treaties are well known: offshoring our manufacturing base and our jobs. But the constitutional results have been mostly ignored: “Fast Track” violation of the Constitutional requirement that treaties be approved by ⅔ of the Senate, and offshoring our sovereignty by subjecting local, state and federal laws and regulations to approval by unelected and unaccountable global governance bodies such as the WTO Appellate Body and other international tribunals.

    We at Balanced Trade Associates want to reverse this decline in American manufacturing and American prosperity, and return our sovereignty to the elected bodies described in our Constitution. We understand there are many ways to restore sovereignty and improve our economy, but we think the biggest and first step has to be assertion of American sovereignty through a unilateral (non-negotiable) Act of Congress that stops the flood of excessive imports washing away our domestic industries.

    To that effect, we have drafted model legislation, the Balanced Trade Restoration Act, to restore balance to our foreign trade by using Import Certificates to limit our imports to the same value as our exports. A copy is attached for your consideration. We hope you will introduce it in the Senate and work to get it passed.

    Summary of the legislation:

    1) Taper-down period of 3 years, during which imports are reduced 10% each year, bringing our trade into approximate balance.

    2) Beginning in the 4th year, the value of our imports would be limited to the same value as our exports the previous year, balancing our trade or yielding a small surplus.

    By asserting our national sovereignty to limit our imports to the same value as our exports, this law would divert our merchandise trade deficits -averaging over $720 billion per year for the last decade - into that much new demand for US-made goods. This would create over 8 million new US jobs, and make our fiscal crises easier to solve by growing our GDP and tax base while decreasing the need for social safety net.

    This Act of Congress might be challenged under the terms of our membership in the WTO and our FTAs with 20 countries —and so our draft legislation explicitly asserts American sovereignty by stating:

    “In the spirit of Article XII of the GATT 1994, but under no circumstances contingent on any supranational adjudication of the matter, the United States will take steps to restore balance to its merchandise trade, and safeguard its external financial position and its balance of payments.”


    Within ninety days after the passage of this Act, the President of the United States, or his Trade Representative, shall give notice to foreign governments that any provisions of any Treaties or Agreements or Conventions or Letters of Understanding or any other agreement to which the United States is a party, as might be in conflict with the provisions of this Act, will terminate upon the expiration of the periods of notice provided for in such agreements. If there are no such periods of notice specified, then any such agreement provisions shall expire no later than 120 days after passage of this Act.

    Restoring American manufacturing and restoring American sovereignty might require the USA to either fundamentally re-negotiate -or abrogate- our membership in the WTO and our many FTAs. So be it. Replacing the Free Trade treaties with a Balanced Trade policy would historically reclaim American trade policy and sovereignty in the interests of the citizens of the USA, rather than as tools of globalized banks and corporations that have no loyalty to our country. We hope you will agree with us that this would be good for America, both constitutionally and economically.

    Attached are 2 documents: 1) a powerpoint slideshow contrasting the disaster of our current trade policy to the prosperity we can have with a Balanced Trade policy; and 2) a detailed plan for the Balanced Trade policy, including model legislation plus summaries of how the policy could work, including a system of auctioning of Import Certificates.

    We have presented this model legislation in person to Representative Rosa DeLauro, who continues to show interest in it. We have also presented it to aides of Senator Chris Murphy and have encouraged him to reach out to you as a strong advocate of restoring American sovereignty and prosperity. We hope you will be part of a bipartisan transformation of our trade policy that can reverse our country’s historic and worsening economic and constitutional decline.

    Please feel free to contact me anytime (203-893-7306 or email) to discuss our proposal, or John Barto our Executive Director at 203-768-8687.

    For Our Country, —Will Wilkin.

    Will Wilkin
    Deputy Director
    Balanced Trade Associates
    346 Oxford Road
    Oxford, CT 06478