Amid a heated intra-party debate on trade, Sen. Elizabeth Warren is encouraging members of a progressive group to keep up their fight against the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal.
The TPP is a multinational trade agreement pushed by the Obama administration, which progressives and Donald Trump allies feel would harm U.S. workers by driving down labor prices and empowering multi-national corporations.
The typically obscure issue of trade policy has thrust to the fore this year thanks to vocal opposition from Trump and Bernie Sanders, who is making an all-out push to get anti-TPP language added to the Democratic platform at a party meeting in Orlando this weekend.
Congress needs to approve TPP, and Sanders allies want the platform to oppose any vote on the trade pact in the lame duck session of Congress later this year, but they say say Clinton-aligned members have so far nixed that provision. Clinton is opposed to the TPP as well, but the trade pact is a top goal of President Obama's.
Warren, a potential Clinton vice presidential pick and longtime TPP critic, cut a five-minute video message that will be sent to members of the liberal group CREDO Action, whom she thanks for "keeping up the pressure to stop the Trans Pacific Partnership."
"Congress will have to vote straight up or down on TPP, no amendments, no chance to strip out things like ISDS, and that's why I'm counting on CREDO members like you to help me fight to stop the TPP over the next few months," Warren says, referring to the controversial Investor-State Dispute Settlement provision.
Warren makes no mention of the platform fight, but opponents of the TPP are likely to view the message as encouragement.
"Supporters of the TPP want you to believe this deal is about America's role in setting the rules of international trade. But here's the problem, TPP isn't about helping American workers set the rules, it's about letting giant corporations rig the rules," Warren says.