WASHINGTON, DC –– Today the Senate will vote on whether or not to advance Trade Promotion Authority legislation, more commonly known as "Fast Track." Fight for the Future, a digital rights group that has been rallying websites and Internet users to oppose Fast Track, released the following statement, which can be attributed to campaign director Evan Greer:
Today, every United States Senator has a decision to make: will they stand with the overwhelming majority of their constituents who oppose the dangerous secrecy inherent in the Fast Track / Trade Promotion Authority process, or will they bow down to the White House and the incumbent industries who have been spending millions lobbying to protect their power?
Many media outlets frame this as a fight between "liberals" and the Obama administration, which couldn’t be further from the truth. People from across the political spectrum oppose both Fast Track and the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, due to extreme copyright and Internet policy provisions that could lead to decreased online privacy, stifled innovation, and global Internet censorship.
Millions of Internet users and thousands of websites, startups, and tech companies have spoken out. Today, we find out who the Senate is listening to. If they value democracy and the future of the Internet, they will oppose advancing Fast Track / Trade Promotion Authority legislation, and demand that the public have access to agreements negotiated in their name.
Fight for the Future, a group that was founded in the lead up to the fight against SOPA, has been one of the most active online groups opposing Fast Track and the Trans-Pacific Partnership. They were lead organizers of the Internet Vote, which has generated more than 6,500 phone calls and 73,000 emails to Congress, and gathered the support of more than 7,500 websites and tech companies. They also built the StopFastTrack.com coalition site, which has garnered the support of more than 100 organizations working on a wide range of issues.
Last month, Fight for the Future made national headlines when they followed Senator Ron Wyden around his home state of Oregon with a 30’ blimp as part of ongoing protests against Fast Tracking the TPP. They also parked a JUMBOTRON on Capitol Hill as part of an anti-Fast Track film fest.