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House Vote On Fast-Track Trade Deal Good News For Foreign Policy

June 11, 2015

There is every reason for supporters of fast-track trade legislation to smile. Come Friday it is now quite clear from reports that the House will cast a vote of support. It goes without saying that this vote will be a significant victory for President Obama.  But for those who think this only a partisan matter are wrong. Many Democrats are lined up against this proposal, and they are wrong.  And to show my bi-partisan nature let me add that those Republicans who support it are correct.

The news from Capitol Hill show that 30 Republicans will cast a vote in opposition and 19 Democrats will vote in favor. The vote tally at the end will be close but needs to fall in favor of passage for the deal to be completed.   With the passage of the bill on Friday it will then prevent congress from amending the deal, and stop the Senate from filibustering it.   Therefore we only need 51 votes for passage when the trade package is presented to congress later this year.

All this centers on the Pacific Rim nations and the trade deal that is a core feature to President Obama’s economic and foreign trade policy.   The deal underscores the idea that open markets are the best route forward to lifting the economic sails of countries who can then spend more of their resources on what we have to trade.

One of the foreign policy reasons this matters is due to the deal encompassing 40% of global economic activity.  Therefore it is a major economic treaty that will be a huge counter-weight to China as the regional muscle-flexing grows only more intense.  It is imperative that we not lose our economic leverage in this region.  I have long awaited for what many have termed the ‘pivot to Asia’ that had been one of President Obama’s missions.    With chaos because of Russia and continued violence in the Middle East such a policy move has been hard to realize.    Therefore I am most desirous of this fast-track trade deal.

I am waiting for the House to show some needed leadership on this matter.

One Comment
  1. Tom permalink
    June 12, 2015 7:45 AM

    I think it is relatively good idea to pass this trade deal legislation. I’m also please that you recognize that “open markets are the best route forward to lifting the economic sails of countries.” Perhaps we could better apply this principle here at home.

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