John Boehner: Obama 'Needs To Step Up His Game' On Garnering Support For Trade Bill

Boehner: Obama 'Needs To Step Up His Game'

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Thursday that President Barack Obama 鈥渘eeds to step up his game鈥 to rally more Democrats behind legislation that would give him fast-track authority on trade deals.

Boehner told reporters that 鈥渢here will be strong Republican support for trade promotion authority.鈥

The bill, which would allow Obama to use expedited procedures to push the Trans-Pacific Partnership through Congress, has a majority of Republicans backing it in the House, but lacks the votes needed for passage.

鈥淎nother point you should keep in mind is that every Democrat leader in the House and Senate are opposed to giving the president what he鈥檚 asking them,鈥 Boehner said. 鈥淭he president needs to step up his game in terms of garnering more support amongst Democrats, especially here in the House.鈥

According to Democrats, however, Obama has lobbied Congress on trade more than any other issue during his presidency. The issue has pitted a significant number of Democrats against Obama.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Thursday that she still hopes the House 鈥渃an find a path to yes.鈥 She admitted the deal Obama has worked out with 12 Pacific Rim countries and Europe puts the U.S. in a 鈥渂etter place鈥 than under the North American Free Trade Agreement. However, she said, Democrats still have concerns, specifically on currency manipulation measures and making sure the trade deals do not hurt American workers.

鈥淚 don鈥檛 think enough of our issues have been resolved for us to be having a big movement of votes,鈥 Pelosi said.

She wouldn鈥檛 talk about the details of her Wednesday meeting with Obama, which appeared to be about the ongoing trade discussions.

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