Statement by the President on the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015
I am pleased that Chairman Hatch, Senator Wyden, and Chairman Ryan have introduced bipartisan legislation to help us negotiate trade agreements that are good for our economy, our businesses, and most importantly for our workers.
My top priority in any trade negotiation is expanding opportunity for hardworking Americans. It’s no secret that past trade deals haven’t always lived up to their promise, and that’s why I will only sign my name to an agreement that helps ordinary Americans get ahead. At the same time, at a moment when 95 percent of our potential customers live outside our borders, we must make sure that we, and not countries like China, are writing the rules for the global economy.
The bill put forward today would help us write those rules in a way that avoids the mistakes from our past, seizes opportunities for our future, and stays true to our values. It would level the playing field, give our workers a fair shot, and for the first time, include strong fully enforceable protections for workers’ rights, the environment, and a free and open internet.
Our exports support more than 11 million good American jobs, and we know that companies that export pay higher wages than those that don’t. Today, we have the opportunity to open even more new markets to goods and services backed by three proud words: Made in America. I look forward to working with Democrats and Republicans in Congress to pass this bill, seize this opportunity, and support more good American jobs with the wages and benefits hardworking families deserve.
I also welcome the introduction of Trade Adjustment Assistance legislation that will strengthen the current program to protect American workers.