Trumped Up Trade: Retaking the Working Class on Trade and the Economy

Trumped Up Trade: Retaking the Working Class on Trade and the Economy

Session Type(s): Panel

Starts: Saturday, Aug. 12 9:00 AM

Ends: Saturday, Aug. 12 10:15 AM

Room: Regency VII



Trump was elected by flipping Midwestern states with appeals to working class voters on trade. Although congressional Democrats have led opposition to job-killing trade deals, these voters were primed to abandon Clinton and believe Trump after myriad deals that offshored jobs and flattened wages. But Trump is contradicting his campaign pledges as the administration’s Goldman Sachs wing fights to maintain the failed trade model—or make it worse. Despite this, Trump still “owns” the trade issue. Many 2018 Senate battles are in states where traditionally-Democratic voters chose Trump on trade. Stopping a GOP Senate supermajority and building an Electoral College majority requires us to take back the working class on trade and jobs.


Lori Wallach

Lori Wallach

Lori Wallach is the director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch. A 25-year veteran of congressional trade battles starting with the 1990s fight over NAFTA, she was named to the “Politico’s 50” list of thinkers, doers and visionaries transforming American politics in 2016 for her leadership in the Trans-Pacific Partnership debate. Wallach is an internationally recognized expert on trade with experience advocating in Congress and foreign parliaments, trade negotiations, courts, government agencies, the media and in the streets. Dubbed “the Trade Debate’s Guerrilla Warrior” in a National Journal profile and “Ralph Nader with a sense of humor” in a Wall Street Journal profile, she combines a lawyer’s expertise on the terms and outcomes of agreements with insight from the front lines of trade debates. Wallach’s specialty is translating arcane trade issues into accessible language.

Wallach has testified on NAFTA, WTO, and other globalization issues before 30 congressional committees and appeared as a trade commentator on MSNBC, Fox, CNN, ABC, Bloomberg, PBS, NPR and numerous foreign outlets. She has been published and quoted in The New York Times, The Economist, Forbes, The Washington Post, USA Today, the Financial Times, and more. A lawyer who has worked in television news and on political campaigns, Wallach is well-informed about the role trade issues played in the 2016 election and the implications for the Trump presidency and 2018 congressional elections as the voters demand action on trade.

Books she has written on trade include The Rise and Fall of Fast Track Trade Authority (2013) and Whose Trade Organization? A Comprehensive Guide to the WTO (2004) and she has contributed to numerous anthologies. She was recently one of three panelists, alongside Chancellor Angela Merkel, at the C-20 Summit titled “Civil 20 Dialogue with the G20 Presidency” which addressed the most pressing globalization challenges of the 2017 G20 Summit.

Wallach was a founder of the Citizens Trade Campaign, a U.S. national coalition of consumer, labor, environmental, family farm, religious, and civil rights groups representing over 11 million Americans, and serves on its board. Wallach is a graduate of Wellesley College and Harvard Law School.

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Erika Andiola


Erika Andiola is a former Congressional Staffer for Arizona Congresswoman, Kyrsten Sinema and co-founder of the DRM Action Coalition. Erika started her community organizing experience when she co-founded the Arizona Dream Act Coalition. She then served in the National Coordinating Committee and the Board of Directors for the United We Dream Network. Her personal struggle as an undocumented woman herself, with an undocumented family, has given her the drive and the passion to keep fighting for immigrant rights.

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Ben Beachy

Ben Beachy

Ben has worked to transform economic policies for over a decade in organizations fighting for climate equity, workers’ and immigrants’ rights, trade justice, and public health. That includes work as director of Sierra Club’s Living Economy program, senior policy advisor for Sierra Club’s trade team, research director for Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch, and national organizer for Witness for Peace. He also has written on the financial crisis with the Global Development and Environment Institute in Boston, researched climate impacts with ActionAid in India, and investigated labor abuses with the Worker Rights Consortium in Central America. Ben received a Master in Public Policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, where he was a Public Service Fellow. He hails from West Virginia and volunteers in support of immigrant-led efforts to resist deportations.

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Rep. Keith Ellison


Keith Ellison has represented the Fifth Congressional District of Minnesota in the U.S. House of Representatives since taking office on January 4, 2007. The Fifth Congressional District is the most vibrant and ethnically diverse district in Minnesota with a rich history and traditions.The Fifth District includes the City of Minneapolis and the surrounding suburbs.

Keith’s philosophy is one of “generosity and inclusiveness.” His roots as a community activist and his message of inclusivity through democratic participation resonates throughout the Fifth District. His priorities in Congress are: promoting peace, prosperity for working families, environmental sustainability, and civil and human rights

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Murshed Zaheed


Murshed empowers CREDO customers and CREDO Action members to fight for progressive change in Washington, D.C., and in state capitols across the country. His more than 10 years of political experience includes his position as Director of New Media for then Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. He has worked in a number of national campaigns and nonprofit organizations, engaging in grassroots advocacy and organizing activism. He was a member of Gov. Howard Dean’s groundbreaking online fundraising team during Dean’s 2003–2004 presidential campaign. Murshed is a graduate of UCLA and blue & gold Bruin fan, as well as a graduate of the Boston University School of Law.

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