US Congress to take back trade authority from Bush

Washington, June 30:

Congress will take back its full trade authority from president George W Bush, said the majority Democratic leadership, dismissing White House urgings to let him keep his special power.

The expiration of the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), which lets Bush negotiate trade agreements that cannot be amended by Congress, could deal a major blow to the nearly collapsed Doha Round of WTO talks. The TPA, also known as ‘fast-track’, was extended for two years in 2005 and expires at midnight today. “Our legislati-ve priorities do not include the renewal of fast-track authority,” House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other leading Democrats said yesterday.

The House Democrats said they had a plan to improve US trade policy, while at the same time addressing increased economic insecurity felt by American families.