Obama: Trade spat with Warren 'has never been personal'

Obama: Trade spat with Warren 'has never been personal'
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"The issue with respect to myself and Elizabeth has never been personal," Obama told reporters during a press conference at Camp David. "It's fun for the press to see if we can poke around at it when you see two close allies who have a disagreement on a policy issue.”
 
Some Democrats and liberals have been angered at Obama's pointed rebukes of Warren, who has emerged as one of his top critics on trade. They argue the barbs have hurt his effort to court Democratic votes in Congress.  
 
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The war of words had grown increasingly heated, with Obama suggesting Warren has spoken out against his trade plan for political reasons and Warren saying it could undermine the Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform law. 
 
One Obama trade opponent, Sen. Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownBank watchdogs approve rule to loosen ban on risky Wall Street trades Dayton mayor assigned extra security following verbal spat with Trump The Hill's Campaign Report: Battle for Senate begins to take shape MORE (D-Ohio), even accused the president of sexism for referring to the Massachusetts Democrat by her first name. The White House has said it expects Brown to apologize, but so far he has not. 
 
Obama smiled and paused for effect as he used Warren’s first name during his Thursday press conference. 
 
But the president made the case that one of the only areas where his agenda splits with liberals is trade. He said they are on the same page when it comes to addressing income inequality and share the same concerns about negotiating a “fair” trade deal. 
 
“These are folks whose values are completely aligned with mine,” he said. “This just comes down to a policy difference on what we think is best for our constituents.”
 
The Senate on Thursday advanced a trade promotion authority bill that the White House says is crucial to the passage of a sweeping new trade deal with the U.S., Japan, Vietnam and nine other countries. 
 
Obama said he has “concerns” with a currency manipulation bill, which was crucial to winning over enough Democrats to advance the trade promotion authority bill. 
 
The White House has said the language would undermine the independence of the Federal Reserve, and Republican leaders in the House have said they will not support it. 
 
The president said he has spoken with important Democratic senators, such as Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerJewish Democratic congresswoman and veteran blasts Trump's 'disloyalty' comments Schumer says Trump encouraging anti-Semites Saagar Enjeti: Biden's latest blunder; Krystal Ball: Did Schumer blow our chance to beat McConnell? MORE (N.Y.) and Brown, about working on new currency language “that does not end up having a blowback on our ability to maintain our own monetary policy.”
 
—This story was updated at 7:24 p.m.