Tomorrow, the U.S. House of Representatives will vote on H.R. 1314, the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act, otherwise known as Trade Promotion Authority (TPA).
TPA would fast-track trade negotiations and allow Congress to have a final yes-or no-vote on trade agreements. The legislation contains specific trade objectives that the president must follow and requires congressional oversight throughout the trade negotiation process.
TPA is a good thing for SC Farmers. We help feed the world through our agricultural exports. The agricultural export sector is vibrant and important sector of our state’s business community. Agricultural exports contributed $913 million in 2013 to South Carolina’s economy and support over 6,900 jobs. In sum, TPA will help SC farmers remain competitive in the global market, create jobs, boost farm incomes, and expand farming operations.
Congress has granted fast-track authority to every president since 1974. For decades, party leaders have risen above the political fray to enact bi-partisan TPA legislation knocking down trade barriers and helping farmers feed the world. TPA legislation requires public disclosure of trade agreements for 60 days, and Congress must approve of the trade agreement before it can take effect.
TPA isn’t scary; it’s good policy. But what is scary; if Congress sits on the sidelines and doesn’t pass TPA, China and other foreign, emerging economies will dictate trade policy to the detriment of American farmers.
That is why it’s critical that you call your congressman and express support for TPA. They need to hear from you that TPA will keep America a leader on trade issues. Ask your Representative to support H.R. 1314 and Trade Promotion Authority.
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Please call the GR Team if you have any questions. (803-936-4214)