The ongoing debate over trade legislation within the Democratic Party between pro-business and pro-labor forces has put deep divisions in the party on public display….It is in this context that many in the labor movement, and on the left generally, view the Trans-Pacific Partnership, now in the final negotiating stages, as an unmitigated disaster. From this vantage point, Republicans who vote for trade agreements are working on behalf of their corporate supporters. Democrats who support the TPP are worse, however, seen by many as traitors to their constituents.
….While the left is ascendant, the likely scenario for a resolution of the intraparty disagreement over trade is as follows: Until she secures the nomination, Hillary Clinton will voice the level of criticism of the TPP necessary to prevent the issue from serving as a mobilization tool for her rivals. Then, if she actually wins the presidency, she will most likely follow the path of her predecessor….After winning the presidency as an adversary of free trade, Obama in office became an advocate.
The party is warring over funding for disease research, bickering over an education bill and deeply divided on the possible renewal of the Export-Import Bank, an object of scorn among the far right.
….The broad disagreement on so many fronts lately is striking. Congress is almost certain, again, to fail to come to a timely agreement on a long-term highway bill. Republican leaders had to abruptly pull the emergency brake on a sweeping reauthorization of the Federal Aviation Administration, amid a tiff about privatizing air traffic controllers. As if all that wasn’t enough, a showdown over government funding is fast approaching.
….All of this acrimony has led some top Republican officials to wonder whether they’ll ever be able to get things in line.
So who’s in more disarray, Democrats or Republicans? Sounds to me like the answer is Republicans, though I suppose it depends on just how bitter the TPP fight gets. In any case, Congress is off for the entire month of August, so most of this stuff won’t blow up until September. Just in time for a government shutdown! Booyah!