I'll let you guess which side Washington seems to be on. David Sirota has been compiling information of the recent wheelings and dealings that once again, hurt the citizens:
Another long day as the reverberations continue to intensify after yesterday's press conference announcing a secret "free" trade deal between a handful of senior Democrats and the Bush administration. In the interest of brevity, I have compiled the major news of the day, including new revelations about who is supporting the deal and who is opposing it, though remember - it is difficult to make any hard and fast conclusions because Democratic leaders and the White House continue to keep the details of the deal completely secret. That said, a look at who is supporting the deal and who is opposing it provides some key insights into what this deal is really all about. Already, the New York Times has reported that at least half of all House Democrats may immediately oppose the deal because it seems to fly in the face of the Election 2006 mandate against lobbyist-written trade policy. And now, a day after the announcement, the battle lines are being drawn.
For reference, Public Citizen is calling for the public immediately contact Congress asking lawmakers to reject the deal, on the basis of what we already know about it. The organization has created a website for this purpose here.
Matt Stoller has more:
Here's what concerns me. There was a big press conference on Thursday designed to create a certain type of message around the trade pact. The Democrats won labor and environmental standards, but corporate America is happy as well. You can see the reporting coming out with this messaging. The problem is that the details of the deal are still secret. I have talked to Congressman Michaud's office, to the USBIC, and to various trade groups, and none of them have seen the specifics of the deal.
This is extremely problematic and dishonest of the people negotiating and announcing the details. Pelosi, Rangel, Baucus, Bush, and the New Democrats knew that they could generate a huge raft of headlines on the trade deal without actually revealing the meat of the deal, so they did so. This is pretty much how the war in Iraq was sold, how the Bankruptcy bill was sold, and how NAFTA was sold.