The Trans-Pacific Partnership, which would grant enormous new powers to corporations, is a massive assault on democracy, says Public Citizen's Executive Director Lori Wallach. She has dubbed it “NAFTA on Steroids.” President Obama wants to use Fast Track authority to force a straight up-or-down vote without any amendments on this corporate coup d'etat – a document Congress has been forbidden from seeing.
You might not have heard about the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, or TPP. That’s because the negotiations and the agreement itself have been shrouded in secrecy, even from the U.S. Congress. Yet the TPP is poised to usher in vast powers for corporations, powers that will override the laws of nations, including the U.S., and bring new corporate rights to undermine environmental and health laws, offshore millions of American jobs, flood the US with untested food products, extend the duration of medical patents, restrict Internet use, and much more.
I support Fair Trade agreements that protect the labor, human rights, economy, environment and domestic industry of partner and recipient nations so that the growth of local industry and agriculture has the advantage over foreign corporate domination. Agreements that protect democracy not crush it. I oppose the TPP because it would further subjugate us to corporate power.
Where does the 5th District incumbent stand on this threat to our jobs, health, environment, and democracy? If you’ve been reading this blog regularly I’ll bet you can guess.
In an effort to combat the TPP threat 151 House Democrats have signed the DeLauro-Miller letter opposing Fast Track and demanding more transparency on the proposed agreement. Mike Quigley is not one of them. Instead, he has said in a public meeting when questioned on the TPP that he gave the White House his word that he wouldn't make up his mind on the TPP until the White House made a decision, TPP activist Jim Coleman reports.
In other words, Quigley is perfectly happy to give up his constitutional authority to regulate trade. He is unconcerned about an agreement that he has not seen but that would override his own authority to make laws and represent his constituents.
The DeLauro-Miller letter states, “we remain deeply troubled by the continued lack of adequate congressional consultation in many areas of the proposed pact”. And:
… the TPP FTA [Free Trade Agreement] will include binding obligations that touch upon a wide swath of policy matters under the authority of Congress. Beyond traditional tariff issues these include policies related to labor, patent and copyright, land use, food, agriculture and product standards, natural resources, the environment, professional licensing, state-owned enterprises and government procurement policies, as well as financial, healthcare, energy, telecommunications and other service sector regulations.
It goes on to re-assert the constitutional right of Congress to set the terms of trade.
Republicans have also recognized the threat Fast Tracking the TPP represents. Twenty-three of them have signed a letter by Walter Jones (R-NC) saying they do not agree to give their constitutional authority over trade agreements to the executive branch.
Let Mike Quigley know that his shameful unwillingness to stand up for his constituents is unacceptable. I will be in the primary election March 18, 2014. Vote for a progressive Green Party champion willing and able to stand up for the people of the 5th!
I am opposed to U.S. military intervention in Syria on practical and moral grounds. Unlike my opponent, I do not have to check with my donors in the military industrial complex before I take a principled stand. I would vote No when the House considers the President’s request to bomb Syria.
I hear from time to time, “Why are you running against Quigley? He’s one of the better Democrats.”
To begin with, the expression “better” Democrats is debatable when all of them are answerable to their corporate donors before anyone else. However, if we accept for the sake of discussion that there are “better” Democrats, is Quigley one of them?
For instance, my opponent has been given the opportunity many times to publicly state that he will support Social Security. He hasn’t done it.
The organization The Other 98% compiled a chart of how representatives stand on every major letter, resolution, or bill since 2010 opposing cuts to Social Security benefits—especially the chained CPI. The chart shows that Quigley has rejected seven public opportunities since 2010 to take a stand in favor of protecting the most successful anti-poverty program in our nation’s history. He won’t protect Grandma.
I will protect seniors, but simply pledging not to cut Social Security is not enough. What our seniors need is an expansion of Social Security with a reduction in the retirement age. I propose setting the retirement age at 58, rather than pushing the retirement age ever higher. This will allow more of our young people to take the jobs vacated by seniors. The unemployment rate for youth is now 16.2 %, more than twice the rate for older workers. The biggest employer of our young people now is the military, which is entirely funded by tax dollars. The tax money spent to send our young people into harm’s way would be far better spent in respecting and supporting our seniors and making space in the job market for youth.
In addition, I propose increasing the benefits allocated to seniors by 10% for those whose incomes are up to three times the poverty level. Low income seniors must spend their money on everyday needs. Such an increase in benefits would not only increase their quality of life but be a boost to the economy since it would create a lasting demand for everything they need, from groceries to home repair. Funding this increase in benefits could come from a small tax on Wall Street speculation, which would generate $350 billion of in revenue every year.
It’s time to support a candidate who stands for progressive principles. My opponent stands for undermining the safety net for seniors. I stand for strengthening it in ways that also strengthen our country. We must invest in our youth and our seniors and thereby benefit our economy. Which choice is better is clear.
Join Team Nancy in the 2013 Pride Parade in Chicago this Sunday 6/30. Let us know you are coming on Facebook.
Show your Green Party PRIDE by marching with us in the Chicago PRIDE parade on Sunday June 30!
Be sure to WEAR GREEN! We'll have signs on hand!
TIME: Meet at 11:15-11:30. Parade steps off at 12pm
PLACE: Meet at Sheridan and Sunnyside (WEST SIDE)
We are entry #10. Look for the Green Party signs and banners!
Green Party Pride Parade Day Contact:
In my last blog post, entitled “Rep. Quigley Votes to Spy on You”, I pledged to stand against bringing blanket surveillance to this country. At that time, I believed, like most of us, that blanket surveillance had not yet come.
I was appalled that Mike Quigley had just voted in favor of CISPA (Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act), thereby supporting snooping into all our emails, Internet searches, and Facebook posts. He voted to shred our constitutional right to be protected from unreasonable search.
It was bad enough for Mike Quigley to be in favor of Big Brother stalking our every move on the Internet. Now the courageous whistleblower Edward Snowden has outed the National Security Agency (NSA) for its surveillance of millions of Americans' cellphone calls and Internet use. Big Brother and blanket surveillance are here – and have been here for some time.
What is Mike Quigley’s response?
Why isn’t Mike Quigley calling loudly for a Congressional investigation into the NSA? Why isn’t he proposing legislation to stop the NSA's apparatus of spying on every American?
How can he? He already voted in favor of it.
As your Representative I would call on Congress to protect our constitutional rights, to investigate NSA abuses. That's what should be happening now in light of Edward Snowden's revelations. But our current Congress is full of people, both Republicans and Democrats, who have no interest in upholding the Constitution and defending our rights. If we want Washington to be accountable, we're going to have to remove the people from office who aren't interested in truly fighting for us.
We cannot allow the apparatus of oppression to stand unopposed and unquestioned. I will keep speaking out against the surveillance state. The next time you see Mike Quigley or contact his office, ask why he supports blanket surveillance and why he doesn't support the Bill of Rights. And then tell him that he's lost yet another vote – yours.
Imagine this: It’s worse than 1984. Now Big Brother is in your computer. It’s 2013, and the U.S. Treasury, National Security Agency, and the Department of Homeland Security are monitoring and recording all your emails, Internet searches, and Facebook posts. Everything you read, write, and think about can be tracked by the government, without the permission of any court of law.
Let me be clear, this nightmare scenario has not yet actually come true. But the bill that would allow it to happen passed the House on April 18 and Mike Quigley, my opponent, voted for it.
The debate over the Keystone XL pipeline may seem distant. As it turns out, the threat is very immediate for us – if Canadian company Enbridge gets its way toxic tar sands oil could be spilled into Lake Michigan, from which we draw our drinking water.
We did it! We got close to 6% of the vote. This is a huge step forward for the Green Party in the 5th district. It means that instead of having to get 5,000 plus signatures of registered voters to get our candidate on the ballot we’ll only need a few hundred next election cycle. Piece of cake.
The non-partisan voter education organization Project Vote Smart says of Green Party Congressional candidate Nancy Wade, she “shows courage”. At the same time, the independent voter advocacy group says each of her two opponents, including incumbent Democrat Mike Quigley, “lacks courage”. That’s an impressive and solid endorsement from an organization widely respected for its non-partisanship.
Read more about Project Vote Smart's recommendation on Examiner.com by clicking here or continue below:
Nancy Wade profiled in the Roscoe View Journal:
Nancy Wade of the Green Party, a lifelong activist and educator, hopes to bring a more progressive approach to Washington politics. Her platform focuses on social and environmental issues that intertwine with national and global problems.
“Equality and fairness are something we prize. We don’t leave the weakest among us in the dust, to fend for themselves, to live and die as fate would dictate,” she said. “I grew up in a time when there was more economic equity and the middle class was very strong. That meant a rising tide lifts all boats. That’s what I want to see again.”
Read the fully story here or continue below.