“Trade is more than an economic exchange of goods — trade is an opportunity. It’s an opportunity for better-paying jobs. It’s an opportunity to advance America’s security abroad. And it’s an opportunity to raise the standard of living for millions of people.”
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) released the following statement after the House approved of the TPA portion of H.R. 1314, the Trade Act of 2015, which gives Congress the authority to approve or deny any trade agreement the President negotiates. The bill will allow international trade agreements, create more good-paying jobs in Eastern Washington, and promote America’s economic interests abroad.
“Trade is more than an economic exchange of goods — trade is an opportunity. It’s an opportunity for better-paying jobs. It’s an opportunity to advance America’s security abroad. And it’s an opportunity to raise the standard of living for millions of people. Today I voted to assert Congress’s authority when negotiating America’s trade agreements. I voted to ensure that your representatives have a seat at the table. And I voted to create more high-paying jobs right here at home.
“As one of the most trade dependent states in the U.S., Washington relies on trade for over 900,000 jobs and $100 billion in annual exports. Crops grown across Eastern Washington are sold across the world, and farms and orchards form the fabric of our communities. According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, exports contribute over $4.8 billion annually to Eastern Washington’s economy. Information about trade in Washington State is available from the Business Roundtable and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
“This vote is essential for the economic future of our country. By expanding our opportunities abroad, we offer American-made products to over 95% of the world’s consumers. This creates enormous potential for American manufacturers, and means more high-quality, better paying jobs around our country. In fact, jobs associated with trade pay, on average, 18% more. TPA also ensures America remains the leader in the global economy. If we fail to assert our authority in trade agreements, we leave a void for countries like China to call the shots. This cannot happen — and, with TPA, it will not.
“I applaud the hard work of Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) for tirelessly promoting the free market principles of free trade. For trade agreements to be successful, we need leadership that represents your economic interests — and that’s exactly what TPA will do. Today the House has paved the way forward for free enterprise, economic growth, and American security.”
The House of Representatives passed the Part II of Motion to Concur in the Senate Amendment to H.R. 1314, the Trade Act of 2015 by a vote 219-211. Part I, Trade Adjustment Assistance failed by a vote of 126-302. In order for the package to be signed in to law, the House will need to reconsider Trade Adjustment Assistance.