Schumer says Pacific trade pact may have enough votes to pass the Senate

Schumer says Pacific trade pact may have enough votes to pass the Senate
© Victoria Sarno Jordan

The expected future leader of Senate Democrats said Tuesday that there is a chance the upper chamber will pass an Asia-Pacific trade agreement this year while acknowledging there is a tougher road in the House.

New York Sen. Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerAmerica isn't ready to let Sessions off his leash Schumer celebrates New York Giants firing head coach: ‘About time’ GOP should reject the left's pessimism and the deficit trigger MORE said that if Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP strategist donates to Alabama Democrat McConnell names Senate GOP tax conferees Brent Budowsky: A plea to Alabama voters MORE (R-Ky.) decides to consider the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) the trade deal may narrowly pass this year. 

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“I think if he [McConnell] puts it on the floor, it may well get its 51 votes in the Senate even if some Democrats change their views," Schumer told CNBC's John Harwood.

"But it's an iffy question for the House to get a majority in the House," he said. 

Schumer, who is expected to take the reins from retiring Senate Democratic Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidBill O'Reilly: Politics helped kill Kate Steinle, Zarate just pulled the trigger Tax reform is nightmare Déjà vu for Puerto Rico Ex-Obama and Reid staffers: McConnell would pretend to be busy to avoid meeting with Obama MORE of Nevada in the next Congress, said McConnell hasn't consulted him about how he will proceed when Congress returns to Washington for a lame-duck session after the November elections. 

McConnell has said he doesn't expect to take up the TPP this year. 

But Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin HatchOrrin Grant HatchMcConnell names Senate GOP tax conferees Ryan pledges 'entitlement reform' in 2018 Utah governor calls Bannon a 'bigot' after attacks on Romney MORE (R-Utah) has said the TPP could pass during the lame-duck session this year if the Obama administration addresses a handful of Republican concerns, including the length of patent protections for high-tech drugs called biologics. 

Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanMcConnell names Senate GOP tax conferees House Republican: 'I worry about both sides' of the aisle on DACA Overnight Health Care: 3.6M signed up for ObamaCare in first month | Ryan pledges 'entitlement reform' next year | Dems push for more money to fight opioids MORE (R-Wis.) has said that there is not enough support in the House for the TPP deal and has said it is doubtful the pact will come up in the House in the lame-duck. 

President Obama and supportive business groups are urging Congress to ratify the TPP by the end of the year before the next president takes office. 

Republican Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse Democrat slams Donald Trump Jr. for ‘serious case of amnesia’ after testimony Skier Lindsey Vonn: I don’t want to represent Trump at Olympics Poll: 4 in 10 Republicans think senior Trump advisers had improper dealings with Russia MORE and Democrat Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonGrassley blasts Democrats over unwillingness to probe Clinton GOP lawmakers cite new allegations of political bias in FBI Top intel Dem: Trump Jr. refused to answer questions about Trump Tower discussions with father MORE each oppose the TPP and have turned trade into a toxic issue on the campaign trail, making the already contentious issue even more challenging for congressional lawmakers.