Even as millions and millions of Americans—represented by thousands of labor, environmental, family farm, consumer, faith, Internet freedom and other advocacy organizations—continue to stand firmly in opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership, those backing the TPP, including President Obama and a large majority of the Republican caucus, still have two dedicated demographic groups pledging their allegiance to the cause and arguing the so-called “free trade agreement (FTA)” would be good for average workers and the economy overall: billionaires and Wall Street titans.
As Zach Carter of the Huffington Post reports:
Last week, dozens of New York City’s power elite signed a letter to the state’s congressional delegation, urging lawmakers to support the Trans-Pacific Partnership now in negotiations. Democrats in Congress largely oppose the TPP, and Republican leaders have said they don’thave the votes needed to pass it without Democratic support.
But while Obama has struggled to win over members of his own party — he has beenpublicly feuding with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) — wealthy CEOs probably aren’t the ideal pitchmen to skeptical Democrats. Even if their letter hails the TPP as “a catalyst for creating new jobs in the United States” that will benefit “American workers in a broad range of industries.”
Fox News mogul Rupert Murdoch signed the letter. So did Steven Schwarzman, who once compared the prospect of raising taxes on private equity magnates like himself to Hitler’s invasion of Poland. John Paulson, the Republican mega-donor who made a fortune betting against the housing market with Goldman Sachs, is also a signee. So is vulture investor Wilbur Ross, who spent six figures to support GOP nominee Mitt Romney in 2012 and has backed such conservative hardliners as Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) and former Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.).