Fast Track

The Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal faces big Senate vote today

The Week

The Senate is holding a crucial procedural vote on granting President Obama fast-track trade authority to negotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership pact with 11 other Pacific Rim nations. If 60 Senators vote in favor of the bill, it will almost certainly pass in the Senate on Wednesday, sending it to Obama's desk.

FLASH: TPA Goes Down -- For Now -- As Trade Bill Fails In The House

President Obama and his estblishment Republican allies suffered a major defeat to his secret Pacific Rim trade initiative Friday as House Democrats and populist conservatives joined forces to derail a key presidential priority and blocked the House from advancing — for now — the administration’s trade agenda. Republican leaders, who had backed the president’s trade initiative, pleaded with their conservative colleagues to support the deal to no avail. However, the victory is only temporary as leaders vowed to bring Trade Promotion Authority and its companion Trade Adjustment Assistance welfare bill back on Tuesday.

Make-or-break vote on Obama trade push

Chad Pergram, Fox News

TPA, which would give the president the ability to "fast-track" future trade deals, is one of two bills due up in the House on Friday. And it’s anybody’s guess if the bills will pass. There is much gamesmanship underway on Capitol Hill as lawmakers try to leverage passage or defeat of the trade legislation.

Paul Ryan: Now the Ugly Face of the GOP Establishment

Those conservatives who saw Paul Ryan and his fellow “young guns” as the vanguard of a new conservative House might profit from recalling the ending of George Orwell’s Animal Farm; “The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.” In his arrogant dismissal of conservative populist concerns about Obama’s secret trade deal, and especially in his angry advocacy of establishment Republican corporatism that would continue the destruction of the aspirations of America’s working families, the transformation of Paul Ryan seems complete. 

Conservative holdouts won’t budge on trade vote

Kelsey Snell, The Washington Post

A group of House conservatives just can’t get to yes on a trade bill set for a floor vote in the coming days. Some want potential bill-killing promises from leadership in exchange for their vote. Others don’t trust giving President Barack Obama more power to negotiate big trade deals. Some don’t like how Speaker Boehner has handled the negotiations from the start. Then there are those who just think trade pacts are often a raw deal.

Paul Ryan: House will approve Obama's trade effort

Eric Bradner, CNN

Rep. Paul Ryan said Sunday the House has the votes to approve President Barack Obama's free trade initiative.The House Ways and Means Committee chairman is sponsoring a bill that would hand Obama "trade promotion authority" -- which would allow him to negotiate the 12-country Trans-Pacific Partnership and submit it to Congress for an up-or-down vote with no amendments. In an unusual alignment, Republicans are aligning with Obama on the issue, while members of his own party -- as well as some tea partiers -- oppose him.

CHQ and Rand Paul Come Out Swinging Against TPA and TPP

Rand Paul is right. TPA and TPP may have many positive economic benefits to America’s 21st Century economy – but how can anyone know or make an informed decision in the atmosphere of secrecy and deception fostered by Barack Obama and his establishment Republican facilitators on Capitol Hill? We urge CHQ readers to call their Senators and Representative (the Capitol Switchboard is 1-866-220-0044) to demand they vote “NO” on TPA and “NO” on the Trans Pacific Partnership unless and until their provisions are made public and disinterested studies of the economic benefits to American workers and quality of life are conducted.

Cruz Battles TPA's Sneaky Immigration Changes

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) has filed an amendment to the Trade Act of 2015 to lock in assurances that this legislation cannot be used to change federal immigration law. The amendment states that nothing in the Trade Act of 2015 or in any trade agreement subject to the Act “shall alter or affect any law, regulation, or policy relating to immigration.”

Senator Jeff Sessions – Leader of the Rising “Populist Conservatives”

The Wall Street Journal attacked conservatives opposing the Trade Promotion Authority or "fast track" bill as “No-Growth Republicans,” but the clear winner in the battle so far has been Senator Jeff Sessions, who has deftly managed to build a coalition of conservatives and Democrats around the sensible idea that if the government is going to manage trade it should be managed in a way that benefits American workers, which it clearly hasn’t been for the past two decades in Sessions’ analysis.

TPA Opposition Comes To New Hampshire GOP Primary

Paul Blumenthal, Huffington Post

Americans for Limited Government, a conservative group founded by wealthy activist Howard Rich, will begin radio ads in New Hampshire on Thursday, calling on Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) to oppose the fast-track legislation moving through Congress. All three senators are running for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination.

Where Should Conservatives Stand On Trade Promotion Authority?

Paul Ryan and Ted Cruz have made a powerful argument that trade deals are good for the economy, good for job creation and good for American international competitiveness and that when we have a trade agreement with a country we tend to have a trade surplus, when we don’t have one we tend to have a trade deficit. So why the discomfort on the Right with giving President Obama the same kind of Trade Promotion Authority Congress gave President George W. Bush?

Trade rumble: Democrats stuck between Warren, Obama

Adam Behsudi and Doug Palmer, Politico

President Barack Obama on Tuesday took aim at his prime antagonist on free trade: “Elizabeth Warren is wrong on trade,” he told MSNBC’s Chris Matthews on “Hardball.” Obama’s tough comments capture the challenge in selling the Democratic Party on free trade, where strong attacks by Warren, labor leaders and other trade skeptics have put pro-trade Democrats on the defensive.