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Scrutinizing TPP, selling Haggen, redefining ‘strikes’…

Tuesday, October 6, 2015




WA-congress-TPP► In today’s NY Times — TPP deal is reached, but faces scrutiny in Congress — The United States, Japan and 10 other Pacific Rim nations on Monday reached final agreement on the largest regional trade accord in history, teeing up what could be the toughest fight President Obama will face in his final year in office: securing approval from Congress.

From AFL-CIO Now — TPP deal is rushed through; working families respond — AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka: “The (Obama) Administration had a hard time reaching this deal for good reasons: it appears that many problematic concessions were made in order to finalize the deal.”

► From The Hill — Obama’s trade deal faces stiff headwinds — The White House’s announcement Monday of an international trade deal covering 40 percent of the world’s economy sets the stage for a bruising, months-long congressional battle that is already spilling into the 2016 presidential race.

► From The Hill — Trade deal looms large for 2016 — The 2016 presidential field is all over the map when it comes to the TPP. Hillary Clinton did not offer an immediate response to the finalized accord Monday. Bernie Sanders issued a fresh statement calling the “disastrous” deal a win for Wall Street and big corporations. On the Republican side, reactions have been mixed.

trade► From Huffington Post — Making sense of the TPP: Don’t confuse trade with trade deals (by Jared Bernstein) — The fact that it has been negotiated in secret has led to a general sense of distrust around the process. Add to that the fact that while we all benefit from global trade, many have lost good jobs to globalization, and many live in communities that have been crippled by the loss of industry. They and their political representatives are naturally skeptical of trade deals… it will be essential to review the TPP when it becomes public and, while the agreement itself cannot be changed, Congress can insist on side deals. A key area here is currency manipulation, a tactic that has cost us many manufacturing jobs in the past.

► From Reuters — White House says ‘more work to be done’ on European trade deal — A White House spokesman Josh Earnest said conversations with European countries around the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) are not as advanced as those that led to the agreement with Pacific nations.




► From PubliCola — Council backs O’Brien ordinance allowing rideshare drivers to unionize — The proposed legislation unanimously passed the council’s Finance and Culture committee last Friday. Despite the unanimous vote, its sponsor, council member Mike O’Brien, says that he doesn’t anticipate the ordinance to go to full council anytime soon due to the likely legal challenge from rideshare companies.

ALSO at The Stand — Support for-hire drivers’ rights in Seattle

haggen► In today’s Bellingham Herald — Haggen to sell 36 stores in California, Nevada — The Bellingham-based grocer, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization, is selling 28 stores to Smart & Final LLC and eight stores to Gelson’s Markets.

► In today’s Oregonian — Haggen hopes to sell its stores to the highest bidder — The Haggen grocery chain is seeking court approval to auction off 127 of its 164 stores. It hopes to sell the stores by the end of the year.

► In today’s Spokesman-Review — Haggen to close Liberty Lake store as part of bankruptcy — The Haggen grocery chain will close its Liberty Lake store just months after entering the Eastern Washington market.

► In the (Longview) Daily News — Kelso School Board approves new teacher contract

► In the USA Today — Alaska Airlines CEO admits his own airline lost his bag — Alaska Airlines CEO Brad Tilden said his own airline misplaced his luggage as he traveled last week to an industry summit in Washington, D.C.




► In today’s (Longview) Daily News — Takko is Democrats’ top pick for Senate seat — Democratic PCOs nominated three people to replace former state Sen. Brian Hatfield, who announced Sept. 1 that he resigned to take a job in Gov. Jay Inslee’s office. The officers’ first choice was hardly a surprise: Rep. Dean Takko (D-Longview).

► In today’s News Tribune — State AG wins case against Pierce County firm that provided bogus training to care workers — A Pierce County judge has ordered the owners of Adult Family Home Service Center, a business that provided bogus training programs to adult family care workers, to pay $27,000 in restitution.




newhouse-dan-15► In today’s Tri-City Herald — Newhouse seeks to slow port slowdowns with new bill — Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-Sunnyside) is getting behind a second bill to help agriculture deal with port slowdowns. He will be primary sponsor for a bill that would put in place “triggers” to require a board of inquiry be created to report to the president in a port slowdown, strike or lockout. The bill would also broaden the definition of “strike” throughout labor law to give the president authority to intervene in a variety of work stoppages, threatened stoppages or slowdowns.


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