U.S. workers should beware of promises that the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will create jobs. When evaluating the recent Obama administration claim that the TPP will create 650,000 jobs, the Washington Post’s Fact Checker gave it the lowest possible rating of Four Pinocchios—aka “Whopper.” Fact Checker editor Glenn Kessler wrote:
Be wary whenever a politician claims a policy will yield bountiful jobs. In this case, the correct number is zero, not 650,000, according to the very study used to calculate this number. Administration officials earn Four Pinocchios for their fishy math.
We agree. After asking the administration for more than four years for information on expected jobs gains from the TPP—by industry and geography—we have still not received any information. Given the job performance of prior so-called “free trade agreements” (FTAs) such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (nearly 700,000 jobs lost) and the U.S.-Korea FTA (60,000 jobs lost), we view any promises about trade and job creation with extreme skepticism. And so should we all.