April 22,2015

Press Contact:

Keith Chu (202) 224-3789 

Wyden Statement on Finance Committee Passage of Trade Legislation

Bipartisan Trade Agreement Supports Middle-Class U.S. Jobs, Protects Against Child Labor and Shores Up Enforcement of Trade Laws

WASHINGTON – Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden, Ranking Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, issued the following statement after the committee passed four bills to bring new transparency, enforcement and labor protections to trade agreements, while expanding support for the U.S. workforce:

“This is a fresh approach to trade policy that’s going to work better for the middle class and create high-skill, high-wage jobs in Oregon and across the country. This is not the same old 90’s playbook for trade. The Finance Committee is sending America’s trade policy in a more progressive direction than it ever has before.

“With this legislation, our standards for trade agreements will be higher. Our enforcement of trade laws will be much tougher and our workers will have the support they need. The process of negotiating and moving trade agreements will be more open, more transparent, and more democratic.

“And in this markup, the committee has worked on a bipartisan basis and made this legislation even stronger.

“This bipartisan process is going to strengthen U.S. trade remedies to do a better job of cracking down on companies that engage in unfair trade.

“It’s going to step up the fight against child labor.

“It’s going to lay down the law and say there are clear consequences when China manipulates its currency at the expense of American middle-class workers and businesses. And that’s only some of what the committee has been able to accomplish today.

“I want to thank members on both sides and their staffs for the bipartisan work that’s gone into this legislation. There’s a lot of work and debate ahead, to be certain. But this will pull America’s trade policies out of the time warp, bring them into 2015, and make sure they work better for the middle class. I believe we can continue to find common ground on those priorities as this process moves forward.”

The Finance Committee passed four bills, including Trade Promotion Authority (TPA). The TPA bill passed with a 20-6 vote. Full information regarding the bills and vote results will be available here.