McConnell departs the Senate floor after a vote at the U.S. Capitol in Washington

U.S. Senate aims to pass fast-track trade bill Friday

McConnell departs the Senate floor after a vote at the U.S. Capitol in WashingtonBy Richard Cowan and Jason Lange WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Senate on Friday was poised to approve the “fast-track” authority that President Barack Obama says he needs to complete a 12-nation Pacific Rim trade deal central to projecting American influence in Asia. The Republican-controlled Senate still must decide several amendments, including a contentious one on currency manipulation that the Obama administration has been working to defeat. Under fast-track, lawmakers would give Obama and his successor in 2017 the power to negotiate trade deals with foreign governments knowing that Congress could offer input but only approve or disapprove the deals and not amend them.

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