WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Senate passed legislation that could grant the president the ability to negotiate a trade deal without markups from congress. Senate Republicans garnered the 60 votes needed to pass the Trade Promotioin Authority with the help of 13 democrats. It’s been the great debate among democrats; whether to give the president this authority or to demand a part in trade negotiations. The next president will have this authority as well.
The deal includes 12 nations from North America, South America and Asia.
Senator Mark Warner, one of the 13 supporting democrats, says we need this trade bill to set standards- especially when dealing with China. China is not included in the deal.
“We can either try to set those rules or we can leave the rules being set by the Chinese. I’d rather have American standards. I’d much rather have us playing on a more level playing field,” he said.
Critics of the trade deal say it will hurt American workers. GOP leaders have offered to pass TAA, or Trade Adjustment Assistance to help any American workers who lose their jobs because of the deal. Senator Sherrod Brown thought this should have passed first.
The Senate passage paves the way for TPA legislation to be law before the weekend. The House already passed the legislation and the final passage for the Senate could be as early as Wednesday.
Only 5 republicans voted against TPA legislation, two are presidential candidates Ted Cruz and Rand Paul.