13:12 GMT26 February 2021
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    House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, one of US President Barack Obama’s top loyalists in the House of Representatives, announced she would vote against giving Obama a fast track authority for free trade negotiations, Pelosi said on Friday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Pelosi argued that she was prepared to “slow down the fast track, to get a better deal for the American people.”

    “I would vote against Trade Assistance Authority (TAA),” Pelosi said ahead of a major vote on the TAA and Trade Promotion Authority (TPA).

    The TAA and TPA are prerequisite authorities for Obama to negotiate the planned Trans-Atlantic and Trans-Pacific free-trade agreements.

    Pelosi pulled her support for the TAA only hours after President Obama had met with leaders on Capitol Hill in a last-ditch effort to rally Democratic Party support for his fast track authority.

    Pelosi’s lack of support for fast track is significant given her regular backing of Obama on major policy issues. The fast track authority is widely unpopular among House Democrats.

    As a result the Senate bill which connected the TAA and TPA, a defeat of one measure — the less controversial TAA — will mean a defeat for the entire free-trade fast track authority.

    The final vote on both the TPA and TAA is currently taking place on the House floor.


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