- The Washington Times - Friday, August 12, 2016

Liberal lawmakers and activists were enraged Friday by reports that President Obama signaled he’ll try to pass his Pacific trade deal in the lame-duck session of Congress, just a day after the woman he hopes to succeed him, Hillary Clinton, said she’d kill it.

Sen. Bernard Sanders, Mrs. Clinton’s opponent in Democrats’ presidential primary, urged fellow senators to make clear they’ll oppose the deal and will withhold the votes needed to approve it. And Rep. Rosa DeLauro said she’s confident they will rally the votes.

“With Members of Congress and the American people rallying against the agreement, the Administration will not have the numbers, not now, and not after the election,” she said in a statement.

The Trans Pacific Partnership, an agreement among a dozen Pacific Rim nations, was to be Mr. Obama’s bipartisan achievement capping off his presidency. But both Republicans and Democrats have turned against the deal, led by Donald Trump, the GOP’s presidential nominee.

Mrs. Clinton, who as secretary of state helped Mr. Obama push the TPP, has since reversed herself and said she opposes it. On Thursday, in laying out her economic plans, she said she will not see it through if she wins the White House.

That leaves Mr. Obama with a short window to get the deal through — and realistically, only the month or so that Congress will return to Washington after the election.

The administration filed a Draft Statement of Administration Action with Congress on Friday, according to a report in Politico, signaling its intent to push forward.

But he faces opposition from the Democratic and Republican leaders in both the House and Senate, each of whom has said the TPP isn’t going anywhere as written.

Mr. Sanders, whose own stiff stance against the TPP forced Mrs. Clinton to come out against a deal she’d previously called the “gold standard” for trade, said now is the time for Democrats to reiterate their opposition.

“In my view, it is now time for the leadership of the Democratic Party​ in the Senate and the House to join Secretary Clinton and​ go on the record in opposition to holding a vote on this job-killing trade deal during the lame-duck session of Congress and beyond,” he said.

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