Hatch, Sessions, Brown, Wyden

Vehicle for Trade Promotion Authority (H.R. 1314)

Senator Hatch: (9:11 AM)

  • Spoke on trade.
    • "I've witnessed firsthand the deployment of this plan to frustrate the process and to prevent a full and fair debate on trade policy. And now here we are facing a cloture vote and the prospect of cutting off debate. It's unfortunate that it's come to this, but given the total lack of cooperation we faced and continue to face on this bill, this is really the only option left. Invoking cloture is not the end. If we can get agreement with our colleagues, I expect there will still be opportunities to call up and vote on amendments. But we can't just sit around and wait for solutions to come together on their own. If any senator has a proposal for a path forward that will reasonably satisfy the various demands and objections that have been raised and allows us to break the logjam on amendments, I'm all ears. Until then, our only choice is to press forward. We could extend this debate forever, and still not satisfy every demand. There's no question about that. But this bill is far too important."

 

Senator Sessions: (9:19 AM)

  • Spoke on trade.
    • "I hate to choose to oppose this legislation at this time, but I've come to that conclusion. I've supported most of our trade agreements in the past. I understand that we are in a global economy, we've got trading partners around the world. There's no way we're going it reverse that. Globalism is here to stay. We need to be a part of it, but it's time for our nation to protect our manufacturing and our workers from unfair competition. And we cannot take the view, as some do and say openly, that about opposing our competitors manipulate their currency to make their products cheaper and they penetrate our market and close American businesses as a result. We cannot say that's all right. We got cheaper products. Don't worry about it. In the long run somewhere along the way, it will all work out. That is a guiding principle for the people pushing this legislation."

 

Senator Brown: (9:35 AM)

  • Spoke on trade.
    • "Two votes we've had. Two votes on Monday night. We haven't had votes since on this. Six amendments pending - six -- but votes for them haven't been scheduled. 200 amendments have been filed. 30 senators have filed amendments, some have filed multiple amendments. Six amendments are pending, even though the six amendments don't have any schedule on how they're going to be voted. Even on the six - two votes among day night. No votes on this issue since. And the six amendments themselves, who knows how they're going to be disposed of. That's an open process? People on my side of the aisle are willing to vote to shut down debate when 25 of their Democratic colleagues and a half dozen Republicans are also offing amendments. 200 amendments filed by all my -- I just found this - 46 senators have actually filed amendments. I erred conservatively. 46 amendments filed - 200 amendments filed by 46 senators on an issue we haven't considered in 13 years and we're going to shut down debate at the end of the first day, first full day of consideration."

 

Senator Wyden: (9:53 PM)

  • Spoke on trade.
    • "Chairman Hatch and I came together and have put in place the most transparent policies on trade in our country's history. For example, by law, by law, before the president of the United States the Trans-Pacific Partnership, that document has to be public for 60 days before the president signs it. On top of that, there are probably another two months that take place before anybody in the Senate or anybody in the House, on the floor of those bodies, actually votes. So what it means is as part of the new day on trade policy, in the past a lot of Americans were in the dark about trade policy. Now they will be able to come to a town hall meeting of their elected officials, like the ones I plan to hold here in a few days at home, the American people will be able to come to a town hall meeting and starting with the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement have that document in their hands for close to four months before their elected representatives cast a vote."