Praise for the 2009 edition of
The Rise and Fall of Fast Track Trade Authority
Senator Sherrod Brown, Democrat of Ohio and congressional trade-policy leader:
"If you wonder why trade policy over the past several years has reflected such narrow interests, look no further than the imbalanced trade policymaking process that is Fast Track. There is no other legislative mechanism with such extraordinary powers. Read this informed and engaging account of Fast Track's history and take action."
Representative Mike Michaud, Democrat of Maine and Co-founder of House Trade Working Group:
Most people now in Congress weren't elected when President Nixon designed Fast Track to grab Congress' exclusive constitutional authority over U.S. trade policy. President Obama discussed the need to replace Fast Track with a process that ensures a greater role for Congress. This book provides the lessons of 233 years of American trade authority history to inform Congress's efforts to create just such a new trade negotiating mechanism."
Alfred E. Eckes, Ohio Eminent Research Professor in Contemporary History at Ohio University, author of "Opening America's Market: U.S. Foreign Trade Policy Since 1776," and former Reagan-appointed Chairman and Commissioner, U.S. International Trade Commission:
"Candidates for federal office should be required to read and address the critical issues raised in this stimulating book. Wallach and Tucker make a persuasive case that the fast-track trade negotiating process produces agreements weighted to the interests of corporate giants and harmful to democratic governance and public safety. Their argument that a more democratic trade policy process is both possible and desirable merits the attention of public officials and thoughtful citizens everywhere."
Dean Baker, Co-Director at Center for Economic and Policy Research, author of "Plunder and Blunder: The Rise and Fall of the Bubble Economy":
"This is a valuable account of the process through which business interests have sought to preempt the democratic control of trade policy. These interests have succeeded in structuring the trade debate so that their policies, many of which are highly protectionist, are dubbed 'free trade,' and any opposition is defined as 'protectionist.'"
David Sirota, syndicated columnist and author, "The Uprising" and "Hostile Takeover":
"Trade is one of the most misunderstood yet most important economic issues America confronts in the 21st century – and rescuing our trade policy from the jaws of corporate manipulation must be a top priority for our nation. Lori Wallach and Todd Tucker have provided a much-needed blueprint detailing how we can do just that."
Ha-Joon Chang, University of Cambridge economics professor, and author, "Bad Samaritans":
"Unbeknownst to most of us, the Fast Track trade authority has been one of the most important institutions that have shaped the global economy in the last few decades. This short but powerful book provides a very detailed, historically informed, and trenchant analysis of this important but neglected issue. It is a must read for anyone who is interested in understanding the future of the U.S. economy and the world economy."
Peter Riggs, Director, Forum on Democracy & Trade:
"'The Rise and Fall of Fast Track' takes as its starting point the Constitutional division of authority over commerce and foreign relations between Congress and the president. The authors show how this in-built tension – Congress safeguarding its right to regulate Commerce, the president arguing for deference to his broader foreign policy objectives – has played out in different political contexts and climates. The result is a fascinating narrative of committee influences and political personalities, of short-term electoral advantage and how the United States' evolving role in the global economy increased the ambition of the executive branch. Most importantly, 'The Rise and Fall' shows the highly contingent nature of the current Nixon-era template for delegating power to the president, its eventual exhaustion under George W. Bush, and its failure to provide a suitable basis for trade policy formation in the future. Tucker and Wallach's highly readable account gives us the historical grounding necessary for re-thinking Congress' role in negotiating and implementing trade agreements, one that restores a healthy balance of powers, more consistent with our system of Constitutional federalism."