The GATT agreementcleared its first hurdle today when the House of Representatives gave it a thumbs-up in a 288-146 vote. The treaty was approved over the objection of consumer advocates, some conservative opponents and a handful of incoming House members -- a group with a different composition, who objected to the vote in the waning days of the lame duck session. Now the treaty goes to the Senate where a much tougher fight is expected. There, it can be approved only after being granted a waiver from Senate rules that demand that any expenditures must be covered by revenues for 10 years. This waiver must get the nod from at least 60 of the 100 Senators. The treaty itself needs just a simple majority and has the requisite support. Today President Clinton took time out to lobby undecided lawmakers and Senate Republican leader Robert Dole today predicted the Senate would pass the deal in a close vote on Thursday.Post your opinion on theWashingtonbulletin board.