Lew: TPP vote still possible in lame-duck

Lew: TPP vote still possible in lame-duck
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Treasury Secretary Jack LewJacob (Jack) Joseph LewThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden argues for legislative patience, urgent action amid crisis On The Money: Senate confirms Yellen as first female Treasury secretary | Biden says he's open to tighter income limits for stimulus checks | Administration will look to expedite getting Tubman on bill Sorry Mr. Jackson, Tubman on the is real MORE on Wednesday said he still believes Congress could vote to ratify a broad Asia-Pacific trade deal, despite some high-profile opposition.

Days after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP increasingly balks at calling Jan. 6 an insurrection Black lawmakers warn against complacency after Juneteenth victory Graham quips key to working with Trump: We both 'like him' MORE (R-Ky.) predicted the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) would not receive a vote before President Obama leaves office at the end of the year, the administration is singing a different tune.


Speaking at the Brookings Institution, Lew acknowledged that there were challenges ahead for getting the deal done, but he remained committed.

“We think it will be done this year, and we’re going to do whatever we can to make that happen,” he said, when asked what message he would give his Asian counterparts.

Lew’s comments make clear that the administration is not going to give up on getting Congress to ratify the trade deal, even as vulnerable lawmakers and top politicians come out against the package.

The presidential nominees for both parties, Republican Donald TrumpDonald TrumpHead of firms that pushed 'Italygate' theory falsely claimed VA mansion was her home: report Centrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting VA moving to cover gender affirmation surgery through department health care MORE and Democrat Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonWhite House denies pausing military aid package to Ukraine Monica Lewinsky responds to viral HBO intern's mistake: 'It gets better' Virginia governor's race poses crucial test for GOP MORE, have both announced opposition to the deal. And the leaders in both chambers of Congress have been far from optimistic about getting it passed.

Earlier this month, McConnell was blunt when he described the chances of the TPP receiving a vote during the lame-duck session of Congress after the general election.

“The current agreement … which has some serious flaws, will not be acted upon this year," he said at the Kentucky State Farm Bureau breakfast.

Meanwhile, Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanNow we know why Biden was afraid of a joint presser with Putin Zaid Jilani: Paul Ryan worried about culture war distracting from issues 'that really concern him' The Memo: Marjorie Taylor Greene exposes GOP establishment's lack of power MORE (R-Wis.), who generally is supportive of trade deals, doubted he had the votes to get it passed in the House.

But Lew indicated that the president plans to use his final months in office to mount a full campaign to get the TPP through, while acknowledging a “complicated” political environment.

“The president remains committed to getting it done and will use every ounce of energy he and the rest of us in the administration have to pushing it forward,” he said.