Dozens of senators came down to the floor throughout Thursday to express their confidence that the agreements would create jobs and stimulate their local economies.

For example, Sen. Max BaucusMax Sieben BaucusCryptocurrency industry lobbies Washington for 'regulatory clarity' Bottom line Bottom line MORE (D-Mont.), who was the floor manager for the bills, said the Panama deal would throw the door open to international business for the Montana agriculture industry.

"We gained some jobs, we lost some jobs," said Brown, speaking of previous trade agreements. "The net, however, is always lost jobs."


“This free trade agreement will provide lucrative new opportunities for Montana farmers, it will level the playing field for American exports, it will do a lot of stuff,” said Baucus prior to the 77-22 passage.

Baucus also attempted to allay misgivings some of his Democratic colleagues had over the least popular of the agreements, the Colombia FTA, arguing that the South American country had taken great strides towards abandoning violence and embracing unions in the last decades. That agreement passed 76-33.

Some senators from the rustbelt states like Sens. Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownBiden moves to undo Trump trade legacy with EU deal How Biden can get the infrastructure bill through Congress Democrats reintroduce bill to create 'millionaires surtax' MORE (D-Ohio) and Bob CaseyRobert (Bob) Patrick CaseyMcConnell seeks to divide and conquer Democrats Senate filibuster fight throws Democrats' wish list into limbo Parliamentarian changes Senate calculus for Biden agenda MORE (D-Pa.) decried the agreements, however, and attempted to dispel the argument deployed by their collegues that the FTAs would inevitably create jobs.

“We should be ashamed of ourselves for passing these agreements and passing them in this way,” added Brown, who also took issue with the expedited legislative procedure granted to the bills that allowed for abbreviated debate and required just a simple majority for passage.

Conspicuously absent from the Senate debate on Thursday was Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidBiden fails to break GOP 'fever' Nevada governor signs law making state first presidential primary Infighting grips Nevada Democrats ahead of midterms MORE (D-Nev.), who was responsible for bringing the legislation to the Senate floor. Reid opposed all three agreements stating tersely several times in the weeks leading up to the vote that he would allow the Senate to work its will.


Regardless, Reid worked with the House, where the bills passed earlier in the afternoon, to ensure passage prior to an address the president of South Korea is expected to deliver to Congress on Thursday. The South Korean agreement passed the Senate by the widest margin of 83-15.

This story was updated at 8:07 p.m. to reflect the passage of the Panama FTA and again at 8:26 p.m. to reflect the passage of the Colombia agreement.