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Canada's ambassador: American vote could produce 'useful' results

WASHINGTON – The Keystone XL pipeline, free trade, mandatory meat-labelling — the results of U.S. elections could affect a number of Canadian industries.

For starters, the controversial, long-delayed pipeline from Alberta now easily has enough votes to pass Congress, after a Republican sweep in the midterms.

A Republican-controlled Senate is also likely to give U.S. President Barack Obama fast-track authority to make it easier to negotiate trade deals.

Gary Doer, Canada’s ambassador to Washington, says Canada has been waiting for the fast-track measure in order to complete negotiations for a 12-country Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Doer says he’s also hopeful that the new Congress will approve Keystone XL, and also reconsider country-of-origin meat labelling, which is blamed for big losses in Canada’s cattle industry.

But the diplomat is careful to avoid taking partisan sides: Doer says Democrats and Republicans would need to work together on these files and others, because neither party has the votes to ram through legislation by itself.