Fight for the Future


President Obama barely mentions Trans-Pacific Partnership during State of the Union Address

Posted 11:20 EST on January 13, 2016

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 13, 2016

Contact: Evan Greer, 978-852-6457, press@fightforthefuture.org

Fight for the Future points to growing opposition to controversial trade deal

WASHINGTON, DC––Last night, during President Obama’s last State of the Union address, the Commander in Chief dedicated only 28 seconds to defending the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, a massive deal between a dozen governments that the President has said is a top priority in 2016.

Fight for the Future, a digital rights group that has opposed the TPP and organized a series of high profile campaigns to rally public resistance against it, issued the following statement, which can be attributed to Campaign Director, Evan Greer:

“The TPP is a sinking ship and President Obama knows it. It’s impossible to ignore the growing public outcry from across the political spectrum, but rather than respond to criticisms about how the TPP would undermine free speech, Internet freedom, and democracy, President Obama chose to barely mention the deal, sweeping those concerns under the rug.

Instead of defending the TPP, Obama used China as a “bogeyman” and told Congress to vote for this agreement based on fear, rather than facts. Anyone watching the news lately knows that China’s economic and political power are in decline. The TPP is not about China and President Obama knows it. This deal is a wishlist for incumbent corporations and it provides the perfect venue for special interests like Hollywood and the record industry to push for unpopular copyright policies that could censor the Internet.

The reality is that President Obama knows this deal is hugely unpopular with his base, and with informed members of the public in general. He was probably smart to avoid talking too much about the TPP, but his brevity exposes the reality that this deal is in deep trouble, and members of Congress should take note before they vote.”

Fight for the Future is a digital rights nonprofit that has driven more than 130,000 emails and more than 15,000 phone calls to Congress in recent months, rallied more than 7,500 websites for an online protest, and helped coordinate a letter to Congress from more than 250 tech companies expressing transparency and tech related concerns about Fast Track legislation.

The group made headlines in March when they flew a 30’ blimp over several of Senator Ron Wyden’s town hall meetings calling for him to “Save the Internet” by opposing Fast Track for the TPP, and then parked a Jumbotron on capitol hill to display the viral video they made about the stunt. More recently, Fight for the Future made a splash on the hill when they delivered actual rubber stamps to every house Republican’s office with a mock letter from President Obama asking Congress to “please rubber stamp my secret trade agenda.

Fight for the Future works to defend the Internet as a free and open platform for expression and creativity, and is best known for their role organizing the massive online protests against SOPA, the Internet Slowdown for net neutrality, and the Reset The Net campaign for online privacy, which was endorsed by Edward Snowden.

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