Well, its official now. The TransPacific Partnership is dead.
Following on the heals of a Republican sweep , both nationally and state wide , it became clear, even to the now lame duck President and his advisers , that their efforts to ram rod the deal through Congress was a non starter. The Congreesional leadership made it clear they would not take up this agreement between now and the new Congress in January. It will be up to the new administration to lead on international trade .
As I said in my last post these far reaching complicated agreements need more vetting at the state and local level before ever reaching as far as this failed one did.
Before any agreement there needs to be a big debate over the nature of the nation state : The nature of the USA and the Nature of Canada. Are we to continue to be independent sovereign nations governed by the spirit and letter of our constitutions or will there be a watering down of some of our sovereignty for the sake of this or that International Trade Agreements. And if so, the clear defining of what elements are being proposed for dilution and what ones will not be part of that dilution. You cannot do through the back door what is obviously unacceptable through the front door. And a clear debate and resolution as to whether constitutional amendment is necessary to pursue deals that see international panels gaining ‘authority’ over items hithertofore of national authority and jurisdiction.
This is no small matter and although many trade experts have pronounced on the long term advantages to such international deals especially the TPP by the Peterson Institute of International Economics , I would like to see legal scholars address some of those proposed provisions from a constitutional perspective.
Now with the TPP dead , it is a opportune time for the Governments of the US and Canada to propose wide public debate on any new International Agreements and full and open assessment of the Constitutional repurcusssions of any new deal.
Only then will a democracy truly be able to decide on its future in this area of Trade Policy.