Weaken America’s Middle Class? Obama’s Asian Trade Deal Sells Out American Workers

Article posted on June 12th, 2015 by WhatAmIMissingHere

Trans Pacific Partnership American workersBy Peter Morici

Congress should not grant President Barack Obama authority to conclude another free trade agreement in Asia, because it would lower American wages and exacerbate income inequality.

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) would eliminate tariffs and lower other regulatory barriers to trade and investment among the United States, South Korea, Japan and nine other Pacific Rim nations.

If successful, China, India and several other nations could seek membership. Hence, the TPP has the potential to redefine the rules for international commerce in the most rapidly growing region of the international economy, but President Obama has given ordinary workers good reason to believe he is not looking out for them.

In March 2012, President Obama inaugurated a free trade pact with South Korea and in many ways, it provides a template for what we may expect from a broader TPP.

Imports from South Korea are up 3.6 billion, U.S. exports are down marginally and the U.S. trade deficit with the Asian nation has swelled to 5 billion. That free trade deal alone has killed about 25,000 American jobs — mostly in high paying manufacturing activities — and added to downward pressures on wages and worsened income inequality.

Over the years, China, South Korea and Japan have violated WTO and International Monetary Fund rules by purposefully undervaluing their currencies to subsidize exports and raise prices for otherwise competitive U.S. products in their markets.

Such currency manipulation would wipe out the benefits American businesses may expect from the TPP — just as it has done for bilateral deals struck with China, Japan and South Korea —  by eliminating tariffs and reducing other barriers to trade.   (my emphasis)

READ all of Peter Morici’s comments from Newsmax here.

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