WASHINGTON AG NETWORK – The White House announced last week it will send USMCA to Congress after September 1st, setting up a busy fall schedule for lawmakers. Many in the Ag community hoped lawmakers would take up the trade proposal before the August recess. However, Democrats have expressed concerns over key elements to the updated NAFTA including enforcement and rules regarding labor and the environment.
While there is disappointment that the U.S. will be the third country to take up USMCA, Central Washington’s Dan Newhouse said it’s important that all ducks are in a row before trying to ratify the trade bill.
“Without having the agreement from the Speaker [Nancy Pelosi] that it will be positively considered, that risks losing the agreement, so I think there’s a strategy being worked out by the White House and the Congress in order to make sure this is a successful process.”
Newhouse added once USMCA is sent to Congress, lawmakers will only have 30 days to ratify the agreement. In the meantime, he is encouraging the entire Ag community to contact their Congressional delegation and ask that USMCA be approved. Mexico ratified the agreement last month, and Canada remains in the process towards ratifying USMCA.