President Obama is welcoming a Senate vote to advance legislation allowing him to negotiate trade deals that Congress can support or reject, but not change.
In a news conference at the presidential retreat in Camp David, Md., Obama also says he shares the values of Democratic critics who worry that any trade deal will be detrimental to American workers.
He says he will only agree to high-standard deals with protections and enforcement provisions, and says many of the concerns of the critics are true of agreements reached before he took office.
Obama spoke a few hours after Republicans and about a dozen Democrats agreed to begin formal debate on the trade bill the president wants. The U.S. is negotiating a potential agreement with a dozen Pacific-area nations.