POLITICS

How Medicare Is Getting Stiffed In Obama's Massive Trade Deal

CAMDEN, NJ - MAY 18:   U.S. President Barack Obama delivers a speech at the Salvation Army, Ray & Joan Kroc Corps Community C
CAMDEN, NJ - MAY 18: U.S. President Barack Obama delivers a speech at the Salvation Army, Ray & Joan Kroc Corps Community Center May 18, 2015 in Camden, New Jersey. Camden was recently designated as a 'Promise Zone', which uses government grants and social programs to increase the local economy. Obama spoke about how these community partnerships are vital to create many different opportunities for all Americans. (Photo by Mark Makela/Getty Images)

In their bid to sell a skeptical Democratic Party on a free trade agenda, the Obama Administration has insisted that no U.S. laws would change as a result. “Our trade agreements would not weaken our ability to implement the law now or in the future,” Treasury Department spokeswoman Whitney Smith told Bloomberg. Top White House officials contended to Politico that the “fast-track” trade bill “expressly forbids changing U.S. law.” As I said last week, this is only partially true, at best. In fact, the companion bill to fast track itself does include a change to U.S. law, paying for assistance for workers who lose their jobs from trade deals — by cutting medical assistance to the elderly.

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