President Barack Obama's free-trade agenda, known as Obamatrade, faces close votes in the GOP-controlled House. But it's Democrats, not Republicans, who want to derail the process.
Ahead of Friday's votes, House Ways and Means Chairman Paul Ryan said he hopes Democrats will come around and support Obama on trade.
It's a rather confusing issue with lots of acronyms, but here's the story.
The Senate has already backed the measure known as Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), which puts the White House and Republicans on the same side. It would renew presidential authority to present trade deals that Congress can endorse or reject, but not amend.
"We have the votes for Trade Promotion Authority," Ryan, R-Wis., said on CNBC's "Squawk Box," hours before the scheduled vote. "This process brings more transparency and more accountability to how we consider trade agreements. And it gives Congress more control over the outcome of these trade agreements." (Tweet This)
"If you don't have Trade Promotion Authority, the president can do what he wants," Ryan said. "Look what he's doing with Iran. It's not a trade agreement, but it's a good example of [how] he can do whatever he wants, negotiate whatever he wants. We have no idea what he's negotiating. And he's not coming to Congress before he agrees to it."