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Green Skeptical Of Trade Promotion Authority Bill

Congressional leaders have introduced a bill that would fast track consideration of international trade agreements. The legislation could have significant ramifications for the Port of Houston and for local manufacturers.

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Trade promotion authority requires Congress to give any free trade agreement a straight up-or-down vote — no amendments allowed.

The Obama Administration is negotiating two of America’s largest-ever free trade deals. One would lower trade barriers between the NAFTA nations and Japan. The other would do the same for the U.S. and the European Union. The White House says it needs trade promotion authority to conclude the talks. Houston Congressman Gene Green says he’ll probably vote no.

“Typically I don’t vote to give the president, whether Republican or Democrat, this kind of ability, because I would much rather empower Congress, all 435 of us on the House side, to be able to have more input into it.”

Green’s district includes the Port of Houston, which would benefit from greater trade with Europe and Japan. It also includes chemical plants, whose exports would face more competition.

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Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew Schneider is the senior reporter for politics and government at Houston Public Media, NPR's affiliate station in Houston, Texas. In this capacity, he heads the station's coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas Legislature and county and city governments...

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