U.S. Senate candidate Tammy Duckworth has reservations about the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Duckworth, now a Democratic congressman from Hoffman Estates, says she’s for trade, but she’s worried about whether the partners to the deal will comply with the terms. “My concern is that when we enter into a trade agreement, it needs to be one that has a rigorous regime for inspections, and making sure that our partners don’t cheat. And from what I’ve seen of the TPP that I’ve been allowed to see, that’s inadequate. I’m all for trade, but our trading partners can’t be allowed to cheat,” she said.
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Duckworth represents a district based in the Schaumburg area that has many manufacturers, especially in the tool-and-die business, which she says have been harmed by past trade deals. She represents few if any farmers. Farmers are for the TPP, and the Illinois Farm Bureau wonders if she’ll change her tune as a statewide candidate.
Duckworth says she says she’s worried about partners such as Vietnam labeling products as made there when they’re really made mostly in China, she’s worried that food products won’t be properly inspected and that countries will engage in currency manipulation.
Duckworth is angling to run against Sen. Mark S. Kirk (R-Ill.), who supports the measure. She may have to get through a Democratic primary.
The TPP would involve the United States and Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam. Final details have not been worked out, but Duckworth says she cannot support the proposal as it is.