Trade Data Center

One-stop shop for searchable trade databases, case lists & more

Eyes on Trade

Global Trade Watch blog on trade & globalization. Subscribe to RSS.

Debunking Trade Myths

To hide the facts about failed trade policies, proponents are changing the data

Connect with GTW

Global Trade Watch Home  Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Page

The Trans-Pacific Partnership: Gutting Buy American

From the workers who manufacture the materials to upgrade America's bridges and highways to those who build the cars driven by our government officials, Buy American creates U.S. jobs by recycling U.S. tax dollars back into our economy. Buy American policies require that most federal government purchases of goods go to American firms, unless a product is not made here or the U.S. product is much more expensive. Buy American is supported by four out of five U.S. voters – Republicans, Democrats and independents alike.

But Buy American would be gutted, and American jobs lost, under proposed TPP rules requiring "national treatment" in government procurement. To implement this TPP requirement, the United States would agree to waive "Buy American" procurement policies for all firms operating in TPP countries, offshoring our tax dollars to create jobs abroad.

Some corporate TPP proponents argue that these rules would be good for the United States because they would allow U.S. firms to bid on procurement contracts in TPP countries on equal footing. The notion that this is a good trade-off for waiving Buy American preferences on U.S. procurement is ridiculous. The U.S. federal procurement market is larger than the combined national procurement markets of all other TPP negotiating parties. Even more, U.S. firms already have equal procurement access in most TPP countries under existing deals. Counting only TPP countries in which this is not true, the U.S. federal procurement market is more than 14 times the size of the total "new" TPP procurement market.

Check out our map showing how your state's tax dollars are contributing toward federal procurement

Reports and Memos  |  Press Room  |  Congress Speaks Out

Public Citizen Factsheets, Memos & Reports

Public Citizen Press Releases & Statements

Members of Congress Speak Out

Copyright © 2016 Public Citizen. Some rights reserved. Non-commercial use of text and images in which Public Citizen holds the copyright is permitted, with attribution, under the terms and conditions of a Creative Commons License. This Web site is shared by Public Citizen Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation. Learn More about the distinction between these two components of Public Citizen.

Public Citizen, Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation


Together, two separate corporate entities called Public Citizen, Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation, Inc., form Public Citizen. Both entities are part of the same overall organization, and this Web site refers to the two organizations collectively as Public Citizen.

Although the work of the two components overlaps, some activities are done by one component and not the other. The primary distinction is with respect to lobbying activity. Public Citizen, Inc., an IRS § 501(c)(4) entity, lobbies Congress to advance Public Citizen’s mission of protecting public health and safety, advancing government transparency, and urging corporate accountability. Public Citizen Foundation, however, is an IRS § 501(c)(3) organization. Accordingly, its ability to engage in lobbying is limited by federal law, but it may receive donations that are tax-deductible by the contributor. Public Citizen Inc. does most of the lobbying activity discussed on the Public Citizen Web site. Public Citizen Foundation performs most of the litigation and education activities discussed on the Web site.

You may make a contribution to Public Citizen, Inc., Public Citizen Foundation, or both. Contributions to both organizations are used to support our public interest work. However, each Public Citizen component will use only the funds contributed directly to it to carry out the activities it conducts as part of Public Citizen’s mission. Only gifts to the Foundation are tax-deductible. Individuals who want to join Public Citizen should make a contribution to Public Citizen, Inc., which will not be tax deductible.


To become a member of Public Citizen, click here.
To become a member and make an additional tax-deductible donation to Public Citizen Foundation, click here.