Bernie Sanders calls out Hillary Clinton to announce her position on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement

snapshot12The Barefoot Accountant of Accountants CPA Hartford, Connecticut, LLC, presents the video and transcript of Ed Schultz on The Ed Show on May 28, 2015 attacking Hillary Clinton for not stating her position on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Agreement.

SCHULTZ: Good to have you with us tonight folks. Thanks for watching.  We start tonight with the Bernie bump. Bernie Sanders has been on the campaign trail for only two days and he`s already giving Hillary Clinton`s campaign some real headaches. During a campaign event in New Hampshire, his first stop since his official announcement. Senator Sanders spoke with clarity on the Trans-Pacific Partnership.


SANDERS: I am helping right now as we speak to lead the opposition to this TransPacific
Partnership trade agreement.

Now, Hillary Clinton can be for the trade agreement the president is.

She can be against the trade agreement. I am, Elizabeth Warren and many others of us are.

But I just don`t know how you don`t have an opinion on this enormously important issue.


SCHULTZ: This is the only sound bite that America wants to hear right now because this is the depressing issue. Now, that is speaking with clarity and that what campaigns are supposed to be about, to let people know exactly where you`re on key issues.  Senator Sanders is leading the opposition against the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Meanwhile, we have no idea where Hillary stands on trade. We get a lot of parameters, but we don`t get absolutes. Clinton has said that she has some concerns about the TTP. But overall let’s be serious, this is her main taking point.


CLINTON: I have said that I`m going to, you know, make up my mind. I`ve been for trade agreements, I`ve been against trade agreements, voted for some, voted against others. So, I want to judge this when I see what`s exactly is in it and whether or not I think it meets my standards.


SCHULTZ: Well, respectfully Mrs. Clinton. You were in the United States Senate. The United States Senate has already voted on the trade agreement.  They`ve voted last week, and it was passing. No, question about it. Now, it`s up to the House and there`s a lot of Democrats in the House right now that want to know where the leading candidates stands on what is going to be a massive trade deal for this country.

Now, Hillary`s position on trade I think is anything but clear. She`s outlined what she wants in a deal. She`s outline what she wants in a trade deal. But she wants to see exactly what`s in it. Well, hasn`t the Senate seen what`s in it? She want`s to see it before she makes a decision. Give me break.

Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State when this deal was being negotiated.  I find it hard to believe that the Secretary of State is so in the dark about the TTP. I agree with Senator Sanders. I find it hard to believe that Hillary Clinton can`t come to the some kind of conclusion on this an absolute, not a parameter of what she`s looking for.

The Clinton campaign is hoping that the House will vote on FastTrack ASAP so they don`t have to deal with this trade issue anymore. Clinton refusal to take a stand on certain issues starting to chip away at her lead in the polls as well, over the past month I know we`re long way away. But she`s going on the wrong direction. Hillary Clinton lost three points on
her lead. Bernie Sanders has jumped 7 points. He`s now at 15 percent. Is this a trend of a bump?

Now with the eight months to go until the first primarily Hillary Clinton shouldn`t be taking anything for granted. We`ve been down this road before.

POLITICO reported today that Hillary Clinton`s campaign is “Frightened of Sanders. Not that he would win the nomination, but he could damage her with the activist base by challenge her on core progressive positions in debates and make her look like a centrist of corporatist”.

Is that what campaigns were all about? Frightened, frightened about the truth. I find that hard to believe. It`s not just trade. Hillary Clinton has been silent on other issue like the Keystone XL pipeline. It`s important to point out Hillary Clinton`s campaign website. It does not have an issues page.  I saw that today, you know, I just found that startling.

Senator Sanders`s website has had an issues tab from the start.

So, when do Democrats get to play fair with one another and say “OK, enough is enough, the House is getting ready to vote on this. The Senate has already voted on it. Let`s get an answer”.  We`re coming down to the 11th hour on trade in this Congress. Democratic
voters deserve to know where Hillary Clinton`s stands on trade and the TransPacific
Partnership. It`s time for an absolute.

We`ve got an absolute from Bernie Sanders. We have not in fairness, we have not got an
absolute from Hillary Clinton and there`s a lot of people that want to know, if she was still on the Senate, how would you voted Mrs. Clinton.

Is this Bill Clinton`s influence on his wife? He was a free trader. He was for NAFTA. So, what`s going on here? Why can`t we get the absolute answer from Hillary Clinton?  Is this loyalty to her former boss, President Obama? That`s a question in itself. When President Obama was in the United States Senate, he said that he was going to do something about currency manipulation.

Well, guess what. This trade deal doesn`t have anything in it about currency manipulation. It doesn`t have anything about investor`s state trade dispute or circumventing American law. Why the hell that we even have representatives in Washington, if we`re going to let International Tribunals tell us how we have to do trade. It`s wrong.

This should be a slam dunk from Hillary Clinton. It is going to be very hard for her and there`s going to be a lot of people who were going to remember that she didn`t take a complete stand on trade before the House voted.

Now, if this is causing political problems for Hillary Clinton. Why in the world would John Boehner bring it to the floor for a vote? Why not make sure Hillary Clinton takes a stand on this. I would venture to say that maybe the Republicans would rather go against Bernie Sanders than Hillary Clinton.

So there`s a lot of political calculations taking place right now.  There`s only one sound bite that this broadcaster wants to hear from Hillary Clinton right now and that is where she stands absolutely, just like every union worker in this country stands absolutely oppose to the Trans-Pacific Partnership. This should not be that hard.

Get your cellphones out. I want to know what you think. Tonight`s question, “Is the TTP going to cause political problems for Hillary Clinton?”  Go to to cast your vote. We`ll bring you the result later on in the show.

So, what are they saying in the middle of county. Let bring in Wisconsin Congressman Mark Pocan who sits on the House Budget Committee, also with us tonight Scott Paul President of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, gentlemen great to have you with us tonight.

Congressman, I want to know what your constituents are saying in Wisconsin in the middle of the country. Are they even aware of FastTrack and TPP, and are they paying attention to it?

REP. MARK POCAN, (D) WISCONSIN: Ed, they`re very aware of it, just a couple weeks ago I had listening sessions in six counties. I think in every single listening session this came up as an issue.

In fact in Lafayette County, the biggest town in Lafayette County is 2,400 people. They just
lost a company with 36 jobs that`s going to Mexico and they`ve applied for trade adjustment assistance. So we`re still seeing that. If you think about that, that 36 jobs in Darlington is like losing 3,600 jobs in Madison also in my district.

So, this is a big issue people talk about everyone Democrats or Republican should be standing against a trade deal that we don`t know enough about and doesn`t have protections for labor environment had this tribunals, doesn`t have currency manipulation go on and list. There`s many reason to oppose this.

SCHULTZ: Congressman. Do your constituents in Wisconsin in the middle of country. Are they curious about President Obama`s reversal on this? Are they talking about it?

POCAN: I`ve got several times while we do the listing session again as an example, why does the White House support this? And, you know, I think this question was asked of the gentleman who did trade for President Reagan who now opposes these trade deals. He said everything they`re promised back then didn`t come to fruition.

And now, he thinks this is a bad route for Americans and his analysis was that the White House, no matter who`s President, often looks at this for geopolitical reasons and we have allies in the region and how do you give something to your allies in a region especially where China is such a dominate economic force?

The problem is that ignores what I care about most which is that we`re going to lose more jobs here in the United States and we`re going to have wages depress right here at home. To me that is exactly what happens every time we have a trade deal that doesn`t have the proper protections and that`s why anyone should oppose the Trans-Pacific Partnership…


POCAN: … if it doesn`t have those things. And I can tell you it doesn`t right now.

SCHULTZ: You know, this isn`t about playing political favorites. I want the audience watching the Ed Show tonight to know. This isn`t about Bernie Sanders. It`s not about Hillary Clinton. It`s not about President Obama.  It`s about those folks out there across American who are in this American economy and their future and their stability. That`s what this issue about.

It`s not about choosing of sides. This is an issue and it`s not a cheap shot nor is it negative to step up and say “OK, where does this candidate stand on something that is going to be so huge to our global economy. Where is American going with this?”

Now Scott Paul, you have recently written an oped and you wrote about President Obama when he was a Senator running for the White House.  President Obama, Barack Obama said he didn`t get that he`d get tough on currency. But now with an opportunity to do something about it as President he`s change his tune. What do you make of that Mr. Paul?

SCOTT PAUL, ALLIANCE FOR AMERICAN MANUFACTURING: Well, I`d like to see more of the Barack Obama of 2007 and a little less of what we`re seeing today. If he was true to his words in 2007 and I would add if Senator Clinton is true to the words that she spoke back in 2007 as well.  Could be no doubt that this process the TPA, the FastTrack
authority and the agreement the Trans-Pacific Partnership would look a lot different than
they are today and that they would represent the interest of working people.

The challenge has been that and I think Rep. Pocan pointed this out that this is become about geopolitics. I think that`s a flawed argument. It`s become about Wall Street. And it`s losing touch with working people across America.

Ed, I would just add that the clarity is simple to happen. I mean Rick Santorum who announce for president yesterday penned an oped.

POCAN: Yeah.

PAUL: In March calling for dealing with currency manipulation and trade deals a very specifically. There`s an amended that narrowly passed last week that could have a game changer on this. Ed, I would like to hear Senator Clinton talk in the way that she did during the 2007 campaign about this with greater clarity. And I`ll just say this…


PAUL: … I think voters in Iowa and New Hampshire expect an answer. I think they`ll be asking her consistently and I hope they receive one.

SCHULTZ: Well, the Clinton campaign, I`m getting a sense if they want this vote in the House to take place ASAP so they get say “Well, it`s already passed and this is the way it is so we`ll have to deal with it moving forward”. No, I mean this is not a slam dunk in the House right now. And Congressman the votes aren`t there right now.

And this is a huge vacation or should I say working vacation or recess that the Congress is taking right now because they`re getting input from folks back home and this is building. The votes aren`t there or are they Congressman?

POCAN: No, in fact they will pull a vote when the White House and the Republican leadership and Paul Ryan think they have the votes lined up.  But I could tell on the House Democratic side, there are only maybe 20 people right now who`re at the yes and all of the rest of us are right no with a…


POCAN: … small number of undecided. And I can tell you that this is something that on the Republican side we think we might have at least 60 votes and growing who don`t want to give up our sovereignty through some of the provision. You talk about the tribunals and other issue.

So, this is not a slam dunk. We`re going to fight this to the last breathe we have. And I hope that are successful because we`re hearing it from our districts if people don`t want this. There are simply not real constituents who say “I think you should pass this”.

SCHULTZ: OK. Now back to currency manipulation for a moment. China and Japan are big players in this deal. Scott Paul, be very clear. They have a record of currency manipulation, correct? And also that Hillary Clinton has said that currency manipulation has to be address.

Well, in this trade deal it is not addressed. So, how much more information does Hillary Clinton have to have to take a definitive stance on this issue, your thought?

PAUL: Ed, it`s very clear and again this is the Democrats and Republicans largely agree on. We have American businesses and labor that agree on this point as well. And even if you don`t think that China and/or Japan are manipulating their currencies today, just as some smart people say “You don`t throw away you umbrella when it`s sunny outside because it`s going to rain again”.

They have a pattern on this, they have a history. We have sky high trade deficits with China and Japan. They cause American jobs all across Wisconsin and Iowa and New Hampshire there are factories that have shuttered form these unfair trade practices.

And if we truly want a trade agreement that represents 21st century interest in the interest of working people. It`s got to deal with currency manipulation. Right now in this country if you`re a hardworking business, if you`re worker and through no fault of your own you lost your job because of unfair trade practice like currency manipulation. You have…


PAUL: … absolutely no recourse, it just happens that`s why we need to this in trade deals and I would love to hear President Obama to use his position on this back to what it was on 2007. More importantly I think it`s important for Senator Clinton to speak out on this, very forcefully and also very specifically about what she expect.

SCHULTZ: OK, Congressman Mark Pocan, Scott Paul, President Alliance American Manufacturing, great to have both of you with us tonight.

You know folks this is what a campaign is about, to take a tough issue and yes, it is a hard choice. But there are absolutes. American jobs and the American economy is going to be injured if we go down this road. And if history be your guide there`s not one trade agreement that this country can turn to even under the Obama years that can say that it hasn`t added to our trade deficit and that`s American jobs.

Remember to answer tonight`s question at We`ll have the results right after this break. Follow us on Facebook and you could watch my Facebook featured “Give me a minute” and of course you can get my video Podcast at

About William Brighenti

William Brighenti is a Certified Public Accountant, Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor, and Certified Business Valuation Analyst. Bill began his career in public accounting in 1979. Since then he has worked at various public accounting firms throughout Connecticut. Bill received a Master of Science in Professional Accounting degree from the University of Hartford, after attending the University of Connecticut and Central Connecticut State University for his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees. He subsequently attended Purdue University for doctoral studies in Accounting and Quantitative Methods in Business. Bill has instructed graduate and undergraduate courses in Accounting, Auditing, and other subjects at the University of Hartford, Central Connecticut State University, Hartford State Technical College, and Purdue University. He also taught GMAT and CPA Exam Review Classes at the Stanley H. Kaplan Educational Center and at Person-Wolinsky, and is certified to teach trade-related subjects at Connecticut Vocational Technical Schools. His articles on tax and accounting have been published in several professional journals throughout the country as well as on several accounting websites. William was born and raised in New Britain, Connecticut, and served on the City's Board of Finance and Taxation as well as its City Plan Commission. In addition to the blog, Accounting and Taxes Simplified, Bill writes a blog, "The Barefoot Accountant", for the Accounting Web, a Sift Media publication.
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