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NJ Activists Call On Rep. Garrett to Reject Fast Track at Town Hall Meeting

On Thursday, May 7th, anti-TPP activists attend a town hall meeting with Representative Scott Garrett, a Congressman representing northern New Jersey. They began by holding signs decrying Fast Track as people entered the event and then entered to ask questions:

The New Jersey Herald wrote the following about the event:

"On the subject of international trade agreements, Garrett faced scrutiny from Ringwood resident Richard Ebersbach and Frelinghuysen resident Wendie Goetz. Ebersbach, the owner of a machine shop, said his business had suffered greatly in the aftermath of the North American Free Trade Agreement enacted 20 years ago between the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Goetz decried the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership as an unconstitutional usurpation of national sovereignty by unelected international bureaucrats and the fact that aspects of it would not be fully known until after its enactment. Under the proposed agreement, she said, “China could take the U.S. to a tribunal and sue American taxpayers for not accepting tainted Chinese baby food.” Ebersbach, continuing that theme, asked: “If the agreement's so good for us, why can't we see what's happening?”

Garrett acknowledged that he was “on the fence” on the proposed agreement but suggested some compromise was needed to open markets abroad to U.S. goods. On the question of sovereignty, Garrett said “Malaysia or Japan wouldn't enter an agreement with us if a dispute would have to be litigated in our courts.”

After the event, Garrett told Wendie that he was facing a great deal of pressure from the other side. He wasn't willing to tell her which groups are lobbying him, but said "you know the names."

(read the full article and see additional video of the event -- including more audience comments on trade issues -- here)

Let's turn up the pressure and ensure that Rep. Garrett hears from our side as well! As a conservative Republican the key issues to appeal to him on are Fast Track's threat to Constitutional separation of powers and the threat to US soveriegnty posed by TPP and TTIP's corporate investor rights provisions, which alow foriegn coprporations to sue our government for unlimited sums at UN and World Bank tribunals outside the jurisdiction of the US court system. Read more about effective talking points for reaching out to conservative elected officials here.

You can call Congressman Garrett at (202) 225-4465, fax him at 202-225-9048, write to him using his webform (constituents only), or email him.