Mississippi’s Palazzo Under Fire Amid Obamatrade Indecisiveness

Getty Images
Washington, DC

Rep. Steven Palazzo (R-MS) is coming under fire in Mississippi from a conservative state senator who may run against him in a primary next year for thus far refusing to answer any questions about his stance on Obamatrade.

As Breitbart News previously reported, Palazzo has refused to answer whether he will join together with Speaker John Boehner, House Ways and Means Committee chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and the White House to support Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) that would fast-track the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) and other trade deals like the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP).

Text of TiSA and T-TIP is entirely secretive and unavailable for even members of Congress to read at this time, but TPP text is available for members to read in a secret room in the basement of the U.S. Capitol—and they can only bring, in some cases, staffers with high enough security clearances with them to read it. Through spokeswoman Jill Duckworth, Palazzo has also refused to answer if he’s even been to the secretive room in the Capitol basement to read the deal text.

As such, conservative state Sen. Michael Watson—one of the up-and-coming conservative Republicans in Mississippi—is hammering Palazzo and everyone else for thinking about voting for Obamatrade.

“After thoroughly researching the Obamatrade fiasco, it is clear: our Mississippi congressional delegation should vote against Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) on Friday,” Watson said in a statement released on Thursday afternoon.

The text of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) that the TPA would fast track is currently hidden in a secret room inside the basement of the Capitol, not available to the public. Yet most members of Congress either admit they haven’t read it or refuse to answer whether they have. Many members of Congress refuse to confirm whether they’ve read the text of other trade deals that TPA would fast-track such as the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP). Some suggest they are not even available for members of Congress to read.

Issues included in the Obamatrade such as immigration, climate change, sovereignty, along with the constitutional questions about the TPP, give me great pause. Because trade agreements are now much more far-reaching, involving environmental issues, taxes, public health, zoning, immigration and many more important areas, I believe more transparency and checks and balances are needed, not less. Why would any Republican vote to give President Obama more authority when we know what he’s done with executive actions and abuse of power?

Watson went on to note that Palazzo—who came under fire for voting for Boehner’s re-election as Speaker of the House in January—promised back then it would be the last time he would vote for big government. Palazzo issued a statement at that time saying he met “one-on-one and man-to-man” with Boehner “for more than an hour.”

“I asked him directly whether he was going to be a conservative leader who will stand up to the liberal agenda of President Obama, and he unequivocally said yes. I believe him and am willing to give the Speaker and his team a last chance to put us back on a conservative path for America,” Palazzo said at the time. “If Speaker Boehner refuses to put forward conservative solutions immediately to our nation’s problems, I will vehemently oppose his every move.”

Well, as Watson noted here, Palazzo hasn’t done a darned thing to oppose all of Boehner’s big government actions—and appears lined up to do it again with Obamatrade.

Earlier this year when Congressman Palazzo voted to give John Boehner another term as Speaker, he promised us he’d push the Speaker to fight against Obama’s overreaches. Sadly, it appears they’re going to give into Obama yet again. As Nancy Pelosi herself has said, it is “up to Boehner to pass the trade bill.”

When our Republicans in the House are following Nancy Pelosi’s “pass it to see what’s in it” strategy, we are in serious trouble. It’s a another sad step away from Main Street and toward Washington, D.C. We’ve had enough of that brand of politics here in the Magnolia State, and it is high time our elected officials take a stand and lead the charge against Obama’s liberal agenda.

If Watson steps up to run against Palazzo next year, Palazzo will certainly have his work cut out for him. Obamatrade could be the spark that knocks Palazzo and a whole bunch of other squishy Republicans out of office once and for all.