President Barack Obama is taking his fight for the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement to the streets as part of an all-out effort to gain support for the trade deal that has been criticized by both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.
The White House is making a push for the deal to go through in a lame-duck Congress session. The president has organized 30 events over the congressional recess to rally support. The agreement is considered a key part of Obama’s strategy to counter China in the Asia-Pacific region.
Although President Obama has endorsed Clinton, he remains persistent in getting the TPP deal through. Clinton openly opposed the deal last fall, but was in full support of the agreement when she served as secretary of state.
“Well, right now, I’m president, and I’m for it,” said Obama at a press conference earlier in the month. “And I think I’ve got the better argument,” he added. “We are a part of a global economy. We’re not reversing that.”
The president reaffirmed his commitment to getting the trade agreement done by notifying lawmakers he would be submitting the bill later in the year.
But Democrats are growing increasingly concerned that the president’s push for the agreement would create a rift among Clinton voters. Clinton made her strongest argument against the TPP recently, stating that she would reject the agreement now, after the election and also as president.