Indeed, the addition of Quinn to the NEC appears to break the administration’s views on trade into three camps. Quinn’s public statements are very much in line with his position in the Obama administration prior to the election. He argued that the TPP actually does, despite the evidence, protect workers and the environment, and that it will increase access to markets for small businesses and farmers. Contrast this with Trump, himself, and Navarro, open critics of TPP in particular and free trade in general. Finally, there’s the CEO wing of the administration, including Commerce Secretary, Wilbur Ross, Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, and Quinn’s new boss at the NEC and former Goldman Sachs banker, Gary Cohn, who supported TPP until the election, due to the increase in corporate profits it would generate, but have seemingly got in line with Trump, post-election.
Nothing has been said about trade policy that fights climate change. Nothing about workers’ rights. Nothing about fair prices for farmers and ranchers. And, above all, nothing about improving transparency in the negotiating process to allow citizens and citizen organizations real, meaningful, binding input into what the agreements end up looking like.