President Obama speaking at the G-20 Summit in Turkey (White House photo)
NEW YORK – The White House has put Congress on official notice that it will be sending lawmakers a bill to implement President Barack Obama’s Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement later this year.
The White House submitted what’s known as a Statement of Administrative Action giving Congress a 30-day notification that the administration plans to present legislation implementing the TPP.
Obama has previously said that he intends to push the TPP in the lame-duck session of Congress after the election.
Congressional leaders have said they would not consider the so-called “free trade” deal before the election because it is extremely unpopular with voters.
Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton have spoken out against the TPP, though Clinton helped negotiate it and once called it the “gold standard.”
The administration’s latest move makes it official it will push the controversial agreement in the lame duck.
Senator Jeff Sessions, a vocal opponent of the TPP and top adviser to Donald Trump blasted Obama for disregarding the will of the American people.
“Americans know these agreements have allowed trade practices that unfairly close manufacturing plants, costing millions of high paying jobs,” Sessions said.
“President Obama knows that the only chance he has of passing the TPP is during this short window [of the lame duck]. His determination flies in the face of the clear will of the American people, as demonstrated in the primaries,” he added.
Sessions said the lame-duck session is tailored-made for special interests to sneak unpopular legislation through.
“Our nation is about to see once again how powerful forces work overtime to advance a globalist agenda that the people oppose,” the Republican senator from Alabama said.
The Statement of Administrative Action that the White House submitted is required under trade promotion authority legislation Congress passed last year.
The White House submitted its notice on Friday, a day the administration typically puts out news it hopes will be ignored. It came on a day the media was preoccupied with an economic address Hillary Clinton delivered on Thursday.
The notice confirms that Obama will push the TPP, the biggest agreement of its kind in U.S. history, before the end of the year. Obama sees it as a way to cement his agenda in place after he leaves the White House, and to fulfill his stated ambition to fundamentally transform America.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership is a global regulatory pact that involves 12 countries on four continents. Obama says it will “write the rules for the global economy.
Video: Obama says he is confident Congress will approve TPP
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