The domestic politics of trade agreements in the US
From the very beginning of the talks over a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), the landmark free trade deal between the European Union and the United States, the political calendar on either side of the Atlantic was expected to impact their pace. In 2014, elections for the European Parliament and the appointment of a new European Commission, as well as a new President of the European Council, slowed down political processes over the summer and the fall. In the United States, the looming midterm elections in November ensured that trade policy was all but absent from the Congressional agenda, as campaigns focused on more immediate domestic issues. Now, with electoral transitions behind them, policy makers in both the EU and the US are proclaiming a fresh start for TTIP negotiations.
Peter Sparding is a Transatlantic Fellow in GMF’s Europe Program in Washington, DC, where he works on issues related to the transatlantic and global economy.