Questions for candidates are developed
by SPEEA’s national and Northwest
Legislative & Public Affairs committees
based on positions adopted by the SPEEA,
Northwest and Midwest Councils.
Election questions to candidates are an
extension of the in-person advocacy
done by these committees throughout
the year. To get more involved,
contact Chelsea Orvella,
SPEEA legislative director,
Denny Heck (D) - District 10
I opposed granting “Fast Track” Trade
Promotion Authority in the summer of 2015
because I believe we should not make it easier,
sight unseen, to enact TPP due to the magnitude
of its size, i.e. covering 40% of the world’s
economy. Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a
massive document covering over 5,000 pages.
It is important to me that its provisions advance
labor rights and environmental protections and
that they be enforceable. Before reaching a final
decision, I want to make sure these objectives
have been achieved. While it is true that trading
with partner countries can be beneficial, we
must ensure it is fair. Too often we have
forgotten about our nation's manufacturing
workforce and the impact of job losses without
well-funded and impactful job retraining
programs. Workers, communities and the
environment must be protected both here at
home as well as with our partner countries.
Close and ongoing consultations with the labor
movement have been and will continue to be
part of my decision-making process.
Alan LaPolice (I) - District 1
In its current form, I would most certainly vote
AGAINST TPP. I oppose it specifically because
it has left out the interests of workers. In its
current form, TPP is less a trade pact and more
an investor pact which will certainly further
diminish domestic jobs and give credibility to
off-shoring threats employers use to undermine
raising pay and allowing unionization. TPP as
written, will be a far greater threat to domestic
jobs than NAFTA ever was and we’ve seen how
destructive that has been on domestic jobs. For
me to support TPP, and I could, it would need
to be written as a true trade agreement with
consideration for protecting American labor.
When that labor is affected, there must be very
clear guidelines and funding for retraining and
re-employment. It must clearly address the real
cause of decreased exports and that is currency
manipulation. It must not give overwhelming
power to corporations to sue sovereign nations
for what they deem as ‘lost potential earnings’
in trade-based courts. Most importantly, it
must give voice to American workers by giving
them a say in crafting the agreement.
Daniel Giroux (D) – District 4
Vote against. Too many to name but improve
environment, labor standards and a better,
more effective, system to resolve disputes.
Lastly, make signatory countries commit and
implement standards for working conditions
consistent with the U.S.
Suzanne Bonamici (D) - District 1
I am currently reviewing the Trans-Pacific
Partnership to determine whether it is a good
agreement for Oregonians and Americans.
A trade agreement done right will result in
exporting goods, not exporting jobs. Oregon
makes a lot of products that are desirable
around the world, and our businesses here
and in many places across the United States
can grow through increased exports. The jobs
we gain by expanding exports tend to pay high
wages. To earn my support, a trade agreement
must include robust labor and environmental
protections and strong enforcement
provisions. As I review the TPP, I am analyzing
whether the negotiated language provides the
protections necessary for American workers
and businesses to succeed.
Bryan Caforio (D) – District 25
I would vote against the TPP as it is currently
negotiated. I support efforts to reform the
TPP that would ensure the agreement did
not include any harmful provision.
Federal Candidate Responses to Trans-Pacific
Partnership trade agreement question
Race for Freedom
a success in Wichita
Despite heavy rain and flooding in nearby areas, the Race
for Freedom was a success Sept. 10 in Wichita. About 70
SPEEA members and their families took part in the 5k race/
walk. The fundraiser supported ICT-SOS, which strives to
end human trafficking and help those affected, especially
children. SPEEA’s sponsorship is a gift that keeps on giving,
noted SPEEA Midwest Council Chair Mark Gayer (shown
above). “Jennifer White (founder/director of ICT-S.O.S.)
plugs SPEEA every chance she gets, all year long, not just
during the race time. It’s been great to help – ‘because people
Due to weather conditions, the course was not ready for play and the SPEEA Midwest Golf Tournament was canceled.
Question: If the currently negotiated agreement is brought forward for a vote, would you vote for or against
the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement and why? What are the key principles/provisions that must be
included in proposed international trade agreements for you to support these global pacts?