Legal Basis for the U.S.-China 'Phase One' Agreement and Implications for Implementation [February 4, 2020] [open pdf - 617KB]
From the Document: "On January 15, 2020, the United States and China signed and released the text of a 'phase one' agreement to address some of the trade and investment issues between the Parties, including the issues that the Administration investigated pursuant to Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974. U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer has testified that the Agreement, formally titled the 'Economic and Trade Agreement Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the People's Republic of China' (U.S.-China Agreement), does not require congressional approval. This is because the Executive relied on authority Congress delegated to it in Section 301 and on its constitutional authority to enter into executive agreements. This Sidebar provides a brief overview of the possible legal bases for the United States' entry into the U.S.-China Agreement without congressional involvement, and the implications for its implementation."
CRS Legal Sidebar, LSB10403
Congressional Research Service: https://crsreports.congress.gov/