NORRIDGEWOCK — U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin said he’s considering whether to support a measure to let President Obama fast-track a trade deal with Pacific nations that New Balance says could jeopardize 900 jobs in Maine.

After a tour of the shoemaker’s Norridgewock plant on Friday, the Republican from Maine’s 2nd District said he was “still studying” the issue. Experts say his carefulness is no surprise, given a history of skepticism about trade deals in Maine.

Poliquin’s party wants to work with the Democratic president to get a trade deal done, but the North American Free Trade Agreement of 1994 has been blamed for losses of blue-collar jobs nationwide and in Poliquin’s district, which has a rich manufacturing history that he says must be shielded in trade deals.

“Trade is fine as long as it’s fair trade,” Poliquin said. “Our workers and our companies must compete on the same level playing field as everybody else around the world. Under those conditions, we can beat anybody.”

Since 2012, Obama has sought congressional authority to expedite negotiations of the Trans-Pacific Partnership with Japan and 10 other Pacific Rim nations and another trade deal with European countries. It could come up for a vote next week. If Obama gets the authority, lawmakers could vote on approving deals, but they couldn’t change them.

It would increase certainty among trade partners and decrease congressional oversight. Many Democrats are fighting the president on it. U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree of the 1st District was among 151 House Democrats who signed a 2013 letter to Obama saying they’re opposed to this “fast-track” authority.

Republican leaders support it and generally support “free trade” agreements that eliminate tariffs and other barriers between countries, but Maine Republicans have been more reluctant.

Former Republican U.S. Sen. Olympia Snowe and Poliquin didn’t join fellow House Republican members in sending a March letter to Obama that endorsed fast-track.