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SALEM, OREGON — Oregon members of MoveOn.org Political Action said overwhelmingly that they would back a progressive challenger to Sen. Ron Wyden (D) if the state’s senior senator supports Fast Track for the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a dangerous trade agreement that’s been called “NAFTA on steroids.”
More than 79 percent of respondents said they would support a challenger to Sen. Wyden in a 2016 Senate primary in response to the prompt, “How would you react if Sen. Wyden helped grant fast track authority to pass the TPP?” There are more than 88,000 MoveOn members in Oregon.
Here’s what a few MoveOn members in Oregon said about Sen. Wyden and TPP:
“I love Wyden’s stance on privacy and the NSA’s involvement in taking away basic American freedoms. I cannot support his belief that fast-tracking TPP is good for our country. I would actively work to defeat him in a primary if he votes for this bill.” –Patrick H., Milwaukie
“The TPP is so against working people that Wyden’s support of it says he is not working in my interest. That’s enough to support a challenger.” –Lydia D., Brandon
“When I learned that Senator Wyden might support fast tracking TPP, I called his Washington office to say this was a make it or break it issue for me. TPP is a huge step in the wrong direction for all of us and I am strongly opposed to the treaty; fast-tracking it would be a triumph of corporate power.” –Bill K., Eugene
“Sen. Wyden’s constituents in Oregon are letting him know he has a choice to make—either stand with working Americans and help stop the dangerous TPP, or join Republicans to export American jobs,” said Justin Krebs, campaign director for MoveOn.org Political Action. “Policies adopted under Fast Track have cost more than a million jobs and contributed to the shuttering of more than 60,000 factories. Fast-tracking the TPP, which was formed in the image of NAFTA, will most certainly lead to more job loss in the United States. If Sen. Wyden stands for corporations over people, Oregon MoveOn members will hold him accountable.”
Fast Track legislation would give the president authority to sign a trade agreement, and then push it through Congress in just 90 days, with limited debate and no changes allowed. MoveOn members nationwide have been standing with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and many of her Senate colleagues in opposing Fast Track for the TPP by holding events across the country, signing online petitions, and calling congressional offices.
On Tuesday, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), chair of the Senate Committee on Finance, signaled that he was submitting his final offer on an agreement to move Fast Track forward to Sen. Wyden by the end of the day.