Obama makes trade deal top priority in remaining months

WASHINGTON (AP) — Despite formidable opposition across the political spectrum, President Barack Obama is using his final months in office to fight for congressional approval of a 12-nation free trade pact called the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Obama plugged the trade agreement Monday in China, saying it is "indisputable that it would create a better deal for us than the status quo." He said he doesn't have to sell the deal to Asian leaders who were part of the negotiations because "they see this as the right thing to do for their own countries."

At home, presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump bash the agreement and public opinion polls show voters closely divided on its merits.

A survey by the Pew Research Center estimated that 39 percent of registered voters view TPP as a bad thing for the United States and 37 percent consider it a good thing, hardly the kind of numbers that would inspire Congress to heed the president's call.

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