Barbara Lee, California Congressional Rep.Washington, DC , Jan. 8, 2015

Congresswoman Barbara Lee joined Members of Congress as well as industry, labor, environmental and consumer advocates to oppose Fast Track for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). She released the following statement at the press conference.

As the representative from California’s beautiful 13th Congressional district, I have the honor and privilege of representing the Port of Oakland, one of our nation’s busiest sea and airport. I support international trade and commerce because it is critical to the economy of the district and our nation. However, I join the vast majority of Americans, from both parties, in opposing Fast Track for the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

I oppose Fast Track because I oppose bad trade deals that hurt American workers, American families and American businesses, especially in communities of color. NAFTA and the US-China trade deal resulted in the loss of more than 3.4 million American jobs. Many of these jobs came from California and from communities of color. Thirty five percent of jobs lost to China, which totals 1 million American jobs, were from communities of color. This is outrageous! After those workers lost their jobs, their situation got even worse. When those workers found another job, they suffered a nearly 30 percent cut in their wages.

If the U.S. is going to pursue a free trade agreement in the Pacific, Congress needs to have public debates and hearings so the deal is fair and the American people know what’s in it. Fast Track only allows special interest and big corporations to dictate trade deals that the American people oppose. Let’s stop talking about Fast Track and start talking about a trade deal that will create good-paying American jobs for American families.‎

Source: California Congressional Representative, Barbara Lee