In pushing for the trade deals, corporate America and the Obama administration mostly are eyeing the same goal.
“The administration, like the business community, is very forward-leaning on free trade right now. People are singing from the same song sheet,” Wenk said.
Another top pro-trade lobbyist, Caterpillar’s Bill Lane, agreed that all three agreements are ready for action in the coming months.
“The goal of getting them done in June or July is a near-certainty now,” said Lane, whose company has focused on getting its employees to make the case to government officials.
Caterpillar workers wrote 30,025 letters supporting the agreements to the administration and Members of Congress, Lane said. And that effort of ginning up company support for the three pacts will continue, including upcoming Colombian coffee days in Caterpillar plants.
“This is by far the most successful grass-roots effort Caterpillar has ever undertaken,” Lane said. And his company has a stunt planned for inside-the-Beltway, too. But he would offer only a mysterious clue.
“We’ll change the summer fashion of Washington, D.C.,” he said.
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.