June 25,2015

Press Contact:

Aaron Fobes, Julia Lawless (202) 224-4515

Trade Promotion Authority – Then and Now

Senate Sends Pro-Growth Trade Agenda to White House

Shortly after taking the majority in November, Senate Republicans pledged to put the world’s greatest deliberative body back to work for the American people with an ambitious agenda aimed at growing the economy and creating jobs ready for the 21st century. 

Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) was recognized by many as an area of bipartisan compromise that could catapult this agenda forward while reaffirming Congress’s role in trade debates.  By passing TPA, Congress would be able to see that the needs of their constituents could be met in any trade deal, while working to break down trade barriers to make it easier to sell American-made products overseas. 

Fast forward to Summer 2015, and the Senate delivered.

By advancing the Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015 (TPA 2015), legislation to renew TPA, with a strong bipartisan vote, the upper chamber sent legislation to the White House that gives Members of Congress and their constituents a stronger say on trade. 

With TPA signed into law by the President, the United States will be equipped with the tools necessary to  negotiate and implement high-standard trade agreements that will benefit American workers, farmers, ranchers, and businesses with higher paying jobs, greater economic opportunity, and increased access for American products in international markets.

After months of deliberations, negotiations, hearings and votes, the Senate made good on its promise and sent a pro-growth trade agenda to the White House for signature.

Here’s a look at the headlines then and now.



November 5, 2014

The Wall Street Journal - GOP Victory Opens Pathway to Trade Bill

“To pass complicated trade agreements, Congress typically works out a system in advance to ensure the deals won’t get bogged down in procedural delays or blocked by individual lawmakers concerned about fallout in their districts. The system—known as trade promotion authority or fast track—also sets official U.S. goals for trade agreements and can help with enforcement.”

June 24, 2015

The Wall Street Journal - Trade Bill Clears Senate, Moves to White House

“This is perhaps the most important bill we’ll pass in the Senate this year,” said Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R., Utah). “It will help reassert Congress’s role over U.S. trade negotiations and re-establish the United States as a strong player in international trade.”


January 2, 2015

Politico - Trade's big breakout

“The new Republican majority in Congress could turn 2015 into the year of the trade deal.”


June 24, 2015

Politico - Senate clears fast-track bill for president

“The Senate voted 60-38 on Wednesday to send fast-track trade promotion authority legislation to President Barack Obama’s desk, ending more than two weeks of convoluted legislative procedures aimed mainly at overcoming Democratic opposition.”

November 6, 2014

Washington Post Editorial Board - The new Congress should revive a bill on ‘fast-track’ trade authority

“Now that Republicans have gained control of Congress, no policy area is riper for bipartisan action than trade.”


May 23, 2015

Washington Post Editorial Board - Senate’s trade vote was a victory for truth

“The Senate did many things by approving trade-promotion authority; first and foremost, it returned U.S. negotiators to the bargaining table fully empowered to cut their best deal on behalf of the American people.”