In yet another about face, Hillary Clinton has changed her mind on the Trans Pacific Partnership, the largest trade deal in American history which has been described as “NAFTA on steroids.” After caving on numerous issues to Bernie Sanders such as the Keystone pipeline, subsidizing college tuition and others, Hillary Clinton has read the tea leaves and realized that his position to oppose the TPP is also popular among the Democratic rank and file.
For that reason, she announced today that “I still believe in the goal of a strong and fair trade agreement in the Pacific as part of a broader strategy both at home and abroad, just as I did when I was Secretary of State… But the bar here is very high and, based on what I have seen, I don’t believe this agreement has met it.” Naturally, Clinton has to say this because she is on record 45 times previously supporting the Trans Pacific Partnership, but frankly few voters believe Hillary Clinton is going to stick to an issue after its poll numbers drop.
Unfortunately, Congress has already given the President fast track authority on the trade deal which means the right to neither amend nor filibuster are no longer there. With Republicans in control of both houses of Congress, President Obama could pass the deal relying exclusively on Republican votes. However, it will certainly make it politically difficult for the President to buck his party when both major candidates for President are against it, which will likely cause the Democratic caucus to close ranks as well.
Let us hope that the public pressure we can apply on this lame duck president is enough to scuttle the deal.