Congressman Paul Cook

Representing the 8th District of California
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Rep. Paul Cook Votes Against 'Fast Track'

Jun 12, 2015
Press Release

WASHINGTON – Today, Rep. Paul Cook (R- Apple Valley) voted against Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), better known as ‘fast track.’

Fast track would empower the President to negotiate and sign a trade agreement before sending it to Congress. Congress would not be allowed to amend any agreement and would have a limited time to have an up or down vote on the agreement.

Cook said, “Today, I voted no on TPA. After reading the legislation and hearing from thousands of my constituents who contacted me almost entirely in opposition, I could not support this proposal.

“This issue was simple for me: I followed the Constitution. Article 1, Section 8 explicitly gives Congress the lead role in setting the terms of trade agreement. I voted against giving President Obama a blank check to negotiate trade deals in secret, and I firmly believe that any trade deal should require a more inclusive and open process. We’ve seen too many bad deals occur on this administration’s watch, and I don’t want to see another.

"While the TPA legislation passed the House by a vote of 219-211, a companion bill known as Trade Assistance Authority (TAA) failed by a vote of 126-302. I voted against both and without both portions, TPA cannot proceed."

Cook continued, “It’s obvious that this fight isn’t over. The same groups who have been pushing TPA will continue to do so despite this setback. For my part, I’ll continue to oppose TPA and I’ll keep fighting for my constituents.”