Trade Representative Ron Kirk publically stated on July 26 that "we
believe we have the framework for an agreement that will allow us very
quickly, when Congress reconvenes in September, to approve and have a
vote" on Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) and on the pending FTAs.
"We're still working with the leadership to come up with the kind of
specifics of how we'd sequence that," Kirk said, noting that the
proposed framework "would allow us to get a vote on TAA," give Senate
Republican Leader McConnell a chance to make his case for Trade
Promotion Authority and "give us a chance to move" the FTAs.
following morning, House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp told an
audience at the U.S. Chamber that "victory is in sight" on the FTAs, but
success is not yet assured. He described a proposed legislative pathway
in which the Senate would vote first on TAA. Once TAA clears the
Senate, the White House should feel it has the assurance it needs to
send the FTAs to the House. The House would then move on both the FTAs
and TAA separately, Camp said, adding, "I'm hopeful now that we have
this path forward [the White House] will sign on to it."
U.S. Chamber and its partners in the Latin America Trade Coalition and
the U.S.-Korea FTA Business Coalition held a successful "Rally for Trade
and Jobs" on the Hill on July 26. With over 80 business representatives
taking part, teams were able to successfully reach out to more than 300
House offices, hitting every floor of the three House office buildings
including meetings with both staff and Members.