Twelve Republican U.S. senators say they will not block the Trade Adjustment Assistance program (TAA), the controversial bill holding up the ratification of the free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea, various media reported Friday.
The senators vowed that they will not attempt to block the final vote for the bill to reassure Obama that there will be no more delay from the Senate to pass the FTA.
Republican Senator and former U.S. Trade Representative Rob Portman said, “While not going forward with these agreements we’re losing market share every day, which means American workers, American farmers, American service providers are losing opportunities.”
President Obama initially tried to get the FTA passed before Congress’ August recess but it looks as though he will have to wait until September.
President Juan Manuel Santos tweeted Friday his appreciation of Obama’s support for the FTA.
“Thank you, President Barack Obama, for your words and for your support. We are confident that in September the FTA will actually move forward.”