U.S. Rep. John Shimkus strongly supports Trade Promotion Authority

As the idea of Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) comes closer to reality, U.S. Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL) released a statement this week, discussing his support of legislation that would give Congress full constitutional authority to approve or reject trade agreements negotiated by the president. 

“Trade Promotion Authority is not a blank check for President Obama,” Shimkus said. “If it were I would never support it. The reality is that Congress has empowered every president since FDR to negotiate trade deals, and every time we’ve reserved our constitutional right to review those agreements before we vote on them. This time is no different: Congress gets the final say.”

Opponents of TPA legislation have brought up concerns that it would eliminate any transparency and bypass public input on trade deals. Under the proposed TPA, however, American citizens would in fact have several months to review and give opinions on any agreement before Congress would submit it for a final vote. 

“Opening new markets and lowering barriers to trade with consumers around the world increases demand for American-made products, creating jobs and growing our economy here at home,” Shimkus said.

Additionally, the House voted Monday to approve the American Trade Enforcement Effectiveness Act, a separate piece of legislation that would improve and expedite enforcement of anti-dumping laws to protect Illinois steel jobs. The bill, co-sponsored by Shimkus, was introduced by Reps. Mike Bost (R-IL) and Davis (R-IL).

“We need a more timely litigation system so illegal trade practices can be addressed before they put Americans out of work,” Shimkus saod. “I thank Congressmen Bost and Davis for their leadership in getting this bill included in the larger trade enforcement legislation.”