Dear Senator Cruz, Trade promotion authority is an unconstitutional fabrication

April 22, 2015, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement blasting a Wall Street Journal oped by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) in favor of granting trade promotion authority to President Barack Obama to negotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership:

“It is more than disappointing that a man who made his career in Washington, D.C. arguing against the abuse of power by the executive branch would now choose to cede power to that very branch of government which he seeks to lead.

“Trade promotion authority via an executive-legislative branch agreement is an unconstitutional fabrication of the modern administrative state, something Senator Ted Cruz is well aware of. Prior to the Trade Act of 1974 and the New Deal before that, nothing like trade promotion authority can be found anywhere in the constitutional framework surrounding the treaty making process. Cruz has naïvely bought into the idea that Article 2, Section 2 of the Constitution can be averted by simple majorities of both houses to adopt an international trade treaty.

“Meanwhile, real trade treaties, such as the United Kingdom Commerce and Navigation Treaty of 1815, which was a free trade agreement, required a two-thirds Senate majority to be ratified. The only thing that has changed between then and now is the modern Senate’s reckless disregard for constitutional, limited government and the rule of law. Ted Cruz should know better.”

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