Obama promotes his trade agenda by drawing attention to benefits to small businesses

Economic Indicators Associated Press

President Barack Obama is meeting with mayors and business owners at the White House to highlight the benefits of trade on a broad swath of the economy.

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Participants include Mayors Michael Nutter of Philadelphia and Bob Buckhorn of Tampa, Florida, as well as nine business owners from across the country.

Wednesday's meeting is part of Obama's push for trade policies that face Democratic opposition. Obama wants "fast track" authority from Congress to negotiate trade deals that Congress can only approve or reject, but not amend. One of those agreements would ease trade barriers among 12 Pacific Rim nations.

Obama says trade is not just about the Boeings and the General Electrics but small and medium-size businesses. He says he wants to make sure that story gets told.