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Press Call: Foreign Policy Experts Issue Prebuttal of Expected Obama SOTU Sales Pitch About TPP as a Means to Counter China’s Growing Influence

Experts Outline How Foreign Policy Arguments for the TPP Both Distort Political Reality and Distract From Negative Economic Effects of the Pact

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WHAT: With the White House having declared passage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to be its top priority for 2016, President Barack Obama’s last State of the Union address is expected to feature a major sale pitch for the pact. When economic arguments for trade agreements prove unconvincing, invariably, proponents resort to U.S. foreign policy and national security arguments to persuade the U.S. public and Congress to support unpopular deals. With respect to the TPP, the Obama administration shifted to this theme last year in the face of growing congressional and public concerns that the TPP would make it easier to offshore more American jobs and push down wages. But the administration’s foreign policy case for the TPP as a bulwark against China does not withstand scrutiny. Foreign policy experts from across the political spectrum have made a strong case that the pact would weaken U.S. standing in the world. The November release of the final TPP text also reveals that the pact does not include national security language included in all past U.S. pacts over the past decade.

WHO: U.S. Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.), House Foreign Affairs Committee, Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific ranking member
Clyde V. Prestowitz, president, Economic Strategy Institute, and author most recently of “Japan Restored”
Michael Wessel, former general counsel to the House Democratic Leader and a congressionally appointed commissioner on the U.S.-China Economic and
Security Review Commission
Moderator: Lori Wallach, director, Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch

WHEN: 2 p.m. EST, Wednesday, Jan. 6

CALL-IN: 800-875-3456; Passcode: OTTE88021

Please RSVP to nflorko@citizen.org