Hillary Clinton promises to oppose TPP trade deal if elected president

2016-08-12 00:00:31 GMT2016-08-12 08:00:31(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

WASHINGTON, Aug. 11 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton on Thursday reassured her supporters that she would oppose the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement if elected president.

"I will stop any trade deal that kills jobs or holds down wages, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership," Clinton said in a speech laying out her economic plans in the state of Michigan.

"I oppose it now, I'll oppose it after the election and I'll oppose it as president," Clinton said, adding that she would appoint a trade prosecutor to ramp up enforcement of existing trade deals.

Clinton's hard line to the TPP came after Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump on Monday attacked her over trade deals. Trump said Clinton "will enact the TPP" if elected president, which he claimed would have a devastating impact on the U.S. auto industry.

Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe also said last month that Clinton would support the TPP deal or seek to renegotiate it if elected president.

But John Podesta, chairman of Clinton's presidential campaign, responded at the time that "she is against it before the election and after the election."

Clinton supported the TPP while she was secretary of state, but came out against it after the deal was completed last year. She said the TPP in current form didn't meet her "high bar" for creating good American jobs, raising wages and advancing national security.

President Barack Obama has vowed to push Congress to approve the TPP deal during the so-called lame-duck session of Congress after the November general election, the final time window before he leaves White House on Jan. 20.

But many lawmakers have cast doubt on a vote for the TPP in the lame-duck session. House Speaker Paul Ryan said last week that the TPP won't get a vote in Congress this year because there isn't enough support.

"As long as we don't have the votes, I see no point in bringing up an agreement only to defeat it," Ryan said. "I have my own problems with TPP, it is not ready, the president has to renegotiate some critical components of it."

The TPP deal involves Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam. It was formally signed by ministers from these 12 countries in February after more than five years' negotiation.

The TPP now undergoes a two-year ratification period in which at least six countries, which account for 85 percent of the combined gross domestic production of the 12 TPP countries, must approve the final text for the deal to be implemented.

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