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 SchumerTrump legal team offers brisk opening defense of president Impeachment has been a dud for Democrats Trump insults Democrats, calls on followers to watch Fox News ahead of impeachment trial MORE said that if Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellSchumer: Trump's team made case for new witnesses 'even stronger' Trump, Democrats risk unintended consequences with impeachment arguments CNN's Axelrod says impeachment didn't come up until 80 minutes into focus group 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 Mason ReidTensions between McConnell and Schumer run high as trial gains momentum The Trumpification of the federal courts Trump to rally evangelicals after critical Christianity Today editorial 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 HatchKey Republicans say Biden can break Washington gridlock Trump awards Medal of Freedom to racing industry icon Roger Penske Trump holds more Medal of Freedom ceremonies than predecessors but awards fewer medals 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 RyanThe Hill's Morning Report — Dems detail case to remove Trump for abuse of power Social security emerges as latest flash point in Biden-Sanders tussle Hill.TV's Saagar Enjeti rips Sanders for 'inability to actually fight with bad actors' in party 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 TrumpKaine: Obama called Trump a 'fascist' during 2016 campaign Kaine: GOP senators should 'at least' treat Trump trial with seriousness of traffic court Louise Linton, wife of Mnuchin, deletes Instagram post in support of Greta Thunberg MORE and Democrat Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonKaine: Obama called Trump a 'fascist' during 2016 campaign Clinton says Zuckerberg has 'authoritarian' views on misinformation Des Moines Register endorses Elizabeth Warren as Democratic presidential nominee 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.