‘Fast Track’ Trade Bill Signed Into Law
Monday, US President Barack Obama signed into law legislation that gives him “fast-track” power to push ahead on a Pacific Rim trade deal that was the subject of intense debate in Congress.
Flanked by some of the lawmakers who supported the bill through a 6-week congressional battle, Mr. Obama acknowledged that his fight to secure the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) was far from over.
“We still have some tough negotiations that are going to be taking place,” Mr. Obama said at a signing ceremony. He noted that lawmakers and the public will be able to scrutinize the trade deal before it is finalized. “The debate will not end with this bill signing,” he said.
The package also included aid for workers who lose their jobs as a result of trade, and an Africa trade preferences bill.
Mr. Obama urged lawmakers to “summon the same spirit” to work with him to renew funding for highways, bridges and other infrastructure projects. The Highway Trust Fund is on track to run out of money in July.
As Mr. Obama signed the legislation, he said “This is so much fun, we should do it again!”
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