US eyes Russia trade vote by summer end

WASHINGTON - The Obama administration, a senior US lawmaker and the business community are gearing up for a tough vote in Congress to bolster trade relations with Russia, even as Moscow continued on Friday to take stands that make it unpopular in Washington.
"We think ... a compelling, thoughtful case can be made to the American public and the American Congress" to approve permanent normal trade relations (PNTR) with Russia, US Trade Representative Ron Kirk told Reuters in a recent interview.
The administration will be pushing for action in Congress "over the next several months, or at least hopefully before the end of summer," Kirk said.
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