In the last decade, we've lost more than three million manufacturing jobs and tens of million of other jobs to unfair foreign competition.
Failed U.S. trade policies like NAFTA, the WTO, and preferential trading status for China have led to a ballooning trade deficit, lowered wages and deteriorating working conditions. And, through fast-track and an erosion of oversight, Congress has abdicated its constitutional duty to "regulate commerce with foreign nations."
Congress is in need of independent, nonpartisan, neutral expertise on trade issues. That's why I have introduced legislation creating a Congressional Trade Office (CTO). The CTO would be similar to the Congressional Budget Office, which was created by Congress to provide such expertise on economic and budget decisions and to reduce reliance on the executive branch for insight and analysis. With trade legislation affecting millions of American workers, a neutral source of information is needed in order for Congress to conduct better oversight and to make measured, thoughtful decisions on these issues.