Tag Archives: Obamatrade

The complicated status of Obamatrade in Congress

Link here. To sum up, the fast track trade authority for Obama actually passed, but the companion part of the law, dubbed TAA, failed badly. Since the Senate had passed both, the approved law needs to go back to conference so that both houses pass the same bill, or the House can vote again on the portion that was defeated.

That the House leadership is still fighting for this considering the strong opposition from the voters as well as from their own caucus tells us how little they understand the present political situation.

Things look bad for Obamatrade fast track

It is early and the vote hasn’t yet happened, but it appears that the House is going to reject fast track trade authority for Obama.

I need to provide some clarification. This fast track authority is not an actual trade bill, but a procedure that has been used since FDR to make the negotiation process on trade bills easier for the president. For some reason Congress needs to now renew it for Obama.

That Congressmen from both parties are reluctant to renew this grant of presidential power indicates a shift of political power back to Congress. The argument, that this power has been routinely granted since FDR, is not carrying the weight it once did. Instead, there is movement to refuse the president this extra power, partly because there is distrust of Obama because of his abuses of power and executive authority and partly because the voters have elected a lot of new congressmen who in general just don’t like giving presidents more power.

Expect this shift to increase in the coming years. It appears to me that this battle over fast track might be a very positive sign for the future.

“It’s declassified and made public once it’s agreed to.”

Does the quote above, said by Congressman Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin) during debate over the secret Obamatrade bills, remind you of anything? Weren’t we forced to try this dubious legislative approach by Nancy Pelosi (D-California) and the Democrats with Obamacare?

Finding out what was in it after Obamacare was made law has very clearly turned out to be a disaster. The last thing the Republicans should be doing now is to repeat this corrupt practice themselves.

Update: Support for this foolishness in the House appears tepid at best:

According to The Hill, only 116 Republicans and 19 Democrats in the House are committed or leaning to supporting the bill, while 130 Democrats and 29 Republicans are committed or leaning to opposition. That leaves 139 up in the air, most of them Republicans. To get to 218, Boehner and Pelosi will have to find at least 82 more votes out of the 139, a tall order indeed.

The crooked politics behind the Obamatrade deal

And the crooked politics are coming mostly from Republicans, including Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin).

The problem here isn’t the bill itself, it is the manner in which Obamatrade is being enacted, written in secret and classified so that the public cannot read it. No elected official should vote for any bill or law that is not available for the public to read and review. Yet these guys are pushing it, a law that apparently will cede more power to the President at the expense of Congress. Knowing the language of such a law is critical.

It does appear that a growing number of Republicans in the House are going to oppose this travesty. I pray that enough come forward to stop it. And if the vote is taken and there are any Republicans who vote for it, such as did Cruz and Rubio (who hadn’t even read it), they will reveal themselves to be wolves in sheep’s clothing, not to be trusted.