Trade

Democrats and Republicans alike complain the Biden administration has been pursuing economic initiatives overseas without properly consulting lawmakers.

President Joe Biden is pursuing a new and unconventional approach to global economic engagement that eschews traditional free trade agreements — and the congressional approval they require. | Mario Tama/Getty Images

Bipartisan resentment is building among lawmakers who say they are being cut out of President Joe Biden’s trade agenda as he begins brokering deals around the globe.

The White House is pursuing a new and unconventional approach to global economic engagement that eschews traditional free trade agreements — and the congressional approval they require. Members of both parties complain they are being kept in the dark as a result, receiving last-minute briefings with few details about the administration’s boldest initiatives.

It’s a pattern, officials say, that threatens the sensitive division of powers over trade and has some lawmakers debating how to assert their authority. And should Republicans take control of Congress in the fall, as they are favored to do, the scrutiny is all but certain to intensify.

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