Today, the House helped to slow down Fast Track legislation for the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, a sweeping trade deal that threatens women’s rights, human rights and women workers. But the fight’s not over.
In a narrow 219-211 vote, the House passed Trade Promotion Authority, also known as Fast Track legislation. But, in order to move forward with Fast Track, the House had to also approve the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) bill. That bill failed by a 302-126 vote. The Democratic opposition to TPP, led by Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) decided to vote against the TAA in an effort derail Fast Track. The TAA bill provides inadequate assistance to workers who would lose jobs or be injured by the TPP. Until yesterday, in order to fund the TAA, the bill included a $700 million cut to Medicare that had already passed the Senate.
The defeat of TAA has stalled Fast Track for the TPP. Republicans have called for a re-vote on the TAA on Tuesday. If the defeat of the TAA holds, the Fast Track bill will have to go to a joint conference committee to resolve the differences between the bills in the Senate and the House. Each chamber would then have to vote again on the compromise bill.
A coalition of more than 2,000 groups opposed to Fast Track and the TPP—including women’s rights, labor, LGBT, environmental, civil rights, senior citizen’s groups and more—is redoubling its efforts for next week’s fight.