The senate passed the Trade Promotion Authority bill yesterday but it did so without Ted Cruz who supported an earlier version of the bill.
Janet Hook of the Wall Street Journal:
Ted Cruz Flips on Trade Bill on Eve of Key Senate Vote
Sen. Ted Cruz, a free-trade advocate who had supported legislation to expedite trade agreements, on Tuesday flipped his position and announced on the eve of a crucial Senate vote that he was prepared to vote against a new version of the bill, demanding that GOP leaders assure him that they had made no “secret deal” to keep the controversial Export-Import Bank alive.
“As a general matter, I agree (as did Ronald Reagan) that free trade is good for America; when we open up foreign markets, it helps American farmers, ranchers, and manufacturers,” Mr. Cruz said, announcing his switch in an op-ed for Breitbart News, a conservative website that has been a vigorous critic of the Trade Protection Authority (TPA) bill known as “fast track.”
“But TPA in this Congress has become enmeshed in corrupt Washington backroom deal-making, along with serious concerns that it would open up the potential for sweeping changes in our laws that trade agreements typically do not include.”
Cruz was a guest on Special Report with Bret Baier last night and although questions from the panel included a wide array of topics, Cruz’s switch on TPA was the very first one.
The op-ed Cruz wrote for Breitbart made his position quite clear:
Why does Republican Leadership always give in to the Democrats? Why does Leadership always disregard the promises made to the conservative grassroots?
Enough is enough. I cannot vote for TPA unless McConnell and Boehner both commit publicly to allow the Ex-Im Bank to expire—and stay expired. And, Congress must also pass the Cruz-Sessions amendments to TPA to ensure that no trade agreement can try to back-door changes to our immigration laws. Otherwise, I will have no choice but to vote no.
There’s too much corporate welfare, too much cronyism and corrupt dealmaking, by the Washington cartel. For too long, career politicians in both parties have supported government of the lobbyist, by the lobbyist, and for the lobbyist – at the expense of the taxpayers. It’s a time for truth. And a time to honor our commitments to the voters.
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