On Monday, June 22, the McCain Institute for International Leadership at Arizona State University hosted the debate: “A New Transatlantic Trade Deal: Good for America?” at the Burke Theater at the Navy Memorial, in Washington, DC.
The debate centered on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) between the United States and the European Union, and whether such an agreement would be positive for American jobs, growth, labor standards and the environment.
Arguing in favor of an ambitious and comprehensive TTIP deal were Shaun Donnelly, Vice President of Investment and Financial Services at the United States Council for International Business (USCIB); and Jim Kolbe , former U.S. Congressman and Senior Transatlantic Fellow at the German Marshall Fund (GMF).
Arguing against an ambitious and comprehensive TTIP deal were Ted Bromund, Senior Research Fellow at the Heritage Foundation; and Thea Lee , Deputy Chief of Staff, AFL-CIO.
Jon Decker, White House Correspondent at Fox News Radio, moderated the debate.
THE TAKE AWAY:
Key points made in favor of TTIP:
Key points made against TTIP:
Thea Lee argued that the U.S. should drop the investor-state dispute settlement mechanism (ISDS) from the negotiation mandate because it is not necessary between two advanced economies such as the U.S. and the EU. The negotiators should also become more transparent and increase input from consumer, labor, and environmental groups on trade harmonization issues.
Ted Bromund made the point that free trade already exists across the North Atlantic area. Rather than pursuing an ambitious and comprehensive TTIP, negotiators should focus on eliminating all remaining tariffs and quotas and agree to mutually recognized standards only when they make sense – not across the board. Rather than rules convergence, regulators should focus on de-regulation.
Jim Kolbe said the most immediate action needed is for Congress to pass Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) so the President can proceed with concluding negotiations on TTIP.
Shaun Donnelly called for Congress to pass TPA and then for the Administration to negotiate an ambitious TTIP agreement that would include the ISDS clause because investment is a key component of transatlantic commerce.
Vice President of Investment and Financial Services at the United States Council for International Business
Former U.S. Congressman and Senior Transatlantic Fellow at the German Marshall Fund
Senior Research Fellow at the Heritage Foundation
Deputy Chief of Staff