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Congressman Boyle Fights for American Workers By Voting Against Trade Promotion Authority (TPA)

June 12, 2015
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman Brendan Boyle (D-PA-13) opposed legislation that would grant any president ‘Fast Track’ Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) to negotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and other global trade deals for up to six years with minimal congressional review and oversight.

“The deals currently on the table lack crucial protections for American workers and the environment, which were also missing from past free-trade deals, like NAFTA,” said Congressman Boyle.  “We should be empowering the American worker rather than providing a free pass to ship American jobs overseas.  Let’s learn from our past mistakes and make the American worker our first priority.  Moreover, it is foolish to renew TPA without ensuring full benefits for displaced American workers through an expansive and fully funded reauthorization of TAA.”

Since taking office, Congressman Boyle has been fighting to strengthen transparency and congressional debate provisions in relation to Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), strengthen labor and environmental protection provisions of the impending Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) free trade agreement, and robustly fund and extend Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA), which provides workers displaced by global competition with reemployment resources like training and education. 

In January, Congressman Boyle signed onto a letter sent to President Obama outlining the Congressman’s concerns about TPA and TPP.  He has also been working with leaders like Senator Elizabeth Warren and Congressman Sander Levin to address problematic Investor-State Dispute Settlement provisions in the TPP that allow other countries to challenge American labor, health and environmental standards through corporate-dominated arbitration proceedings. 

Boyle introduced the American Export Promotion Act, H.R. 2729, to help small- and medium-sized American firms grow their export capacity, and better access and compete in global markets through grant and technical assistance.

“We should be laser focused on supporting cost-effective, job-creating programs like this,” said Congressman Boyle of H.R. 2729.  “We need to access growing consumer markets abroad in a way that also empowers American businesses and workers.  We need to do all we can to empower them in that fight.  This legislation does just that.”

Congressman Boyle is a cosponsor of H.R. 1088, the Trade Adjustment Assistance Act, the House Democrats’ proposal to expand and fully fund TAA until 2020.  He also continues to call for the reauthorization of the Import-Export Bank, which empowers businesses across the country to compete in global markets, but has been held hostage by partisan ideologues in Republican House Leadership.  The Bank is set to expire June 30 absent congressional action.