Capitol Alert

White House boosts Ami Bera one more time over trade

Rep. Ami Bera, D-Elk Grove, on election night in November.
Rep. Ami Bera, D-Elk Grove, on election night in November. pkitagaki@sacbee.com

Rep. Ami Bera, facing withering attacks from organized labor for his stance on a controversial trade deal, was lauded by the White House on Thursday.

Bera was among the few House Democrats to support giving President Barack Obama the power to negotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The AFL-CIO, arguing the deal will harm U.S. workers, targeted Bera in paid ads, saying he “will do anything to keep his job, including shipping your job overseas.”

Bera, an Elk Grove physician whose narrow victories were assisted by unions, countered that allowing Obama to forge an agreement with counties on the Pacific rim could produce a strong deal for America that protects labor standards, grows the economy and creates good-paying jobs in the district.

Obama made similar comments in a recent interview with Sacramento’s NBC-affiliated KCRA-TV. And White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest, asked earlier this month about the labor-sponsored campaign, said Bera could count on the president’s support “in the context of a Democratic primary contest.”

On Thursday, Bera’s loyalty was again recognized by the White House.

“Thanks to the leadership of Rep. Bera, workers and businesses in California will have more opportunity to compete and win in markets both at home and abroad,” Earnest said in a prepared statement.

“With bipartisan support from Congress, Trade Promotion Authority will help America write the rules of our new, global economy so more hardworking Americans can get their products to market.”

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