(CNN) - Even old friends have occasional disagreements.
In a rare joint appearance at the Munich Security Conference, Secretary of State John Kerry and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel dismissed Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's opposition to renewing fast-track trade authority and predicted that the bill will ultimately pass in spite of Reid's opposition.
"I've heard plenty of statements in the Senate on one day that are categorical, and we've wound up finding accommodations and a way to find our way forward," Kerry told the audience of European allies.
"I respect Harry Reid, worked with him for a long time," Kerry said. "I think all of us have learned to interpret a comment on one day in the United States Senate as not necessarily what might be the situation in a matter of months."
Reid said Wednesday he is unlikely to consider a bill on the issue anytime soon.
"I’m against fast track," said Reid, who controls which bills get to the Senate floor. "I think everyone would be well-advised not to push this right now."
With several outstanding trade pacts - including a major deal with the European Union - securing President Barack Obama's "trade promotion authority" remains a priority for the administration. The power would limit Congress' ability to influence American trade policy, only allowing them up or down votes on massive trade deals while leaving negotiations with other nations entirely under the purvey of the President. Proponents of the measure say the TPA prevents crucial trade agreements from getting bogged down in the bureaucratic slog and would help open new markets for U.S. goods. Democrats oppose the measure, arguing past trade deals led companies to ship jobs overseas.
Heralding the ability as something that could "have a profound impact" on the American economy, Kerry said the extension of President Obama's authority could pay dividends and help further drive down the unemployment rate.
"It's worth millions of jobs," he said.
Kerry also was emphatic that Reid's opposition would not stall progress.
"I wouldn't let it deter us one iota, not one iota," he said.
Hagel echoed his counterpart's tone on the issue, saying that Reid's decision to put the bill on hold was imprudent.
"Let's be smart and let's be wise and let's be collaborative and use all of the opportunities and mechanisms that we have to enhance each other - culturally, trade, commerce, exchanges," Hagel said.
CNN Senior Congressional Producer Ted Barrett contributed to this report.