History’s largest trade agreements are being negotiated in secret

by Alvaro Guzman Bastida,  AlJazeera

In August 2007, then–presidential candidate Barack Obama vowed that, if elected, he would “immediately” amend the North Atlantic Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which the U.S. signed with Mexico 13 years earlier.

“Our trade agreements should not just be good for Wall Street. It should also be good for Main Street,” he said, objecting to the influence of corporate lobbyists over labor unions and other groups in negotiating trade agreements.

Six years later, with NAFTA still untouched, Obama faced the decision to appoint the chief U.S. negotiators for the two largest trade agreements in history.

And he picked Wall Street bankers for the job.

Michael Froman, the current U.S. trade representative, received over $4 million in 2009 from his previous employer, CitiGroup, when he joined the government. Stefan Selig, the undersecretary of commerce for international trade and a former Bank of America banker, received more than $14.1 million in bonus pay when he left his old job.  Read the entire story.

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