Recent news reports indicate that House Democrats are “within range” of reaching a deal on the United States–Mexico–Canada Trade Agreement (USCMA).
This is positive news –– for months, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has let the USMCA languish in the House. Instead of standing with workers and small businesses, Pelosi has allowed Big Labor to have veto power over an important agreement that will grow our economy and bring trade relations with Mexico and Canada into the 21st century.
It is time for Congress to pass the USMCA.
The USMCA is a much-needed update to the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The global economy has changed significantly since NAFTA was ratified in 1992. The new USMCA recognizes this reality and modernizes trade relations between the three nations to better fit the 21st century global economy.
The USMCA was finalized nearly a year ago, but Pelosi continues to sit on her hands and allow the far-left to hold the agreement hostage.
There is no good reason for Pelosi to continue blocking the USMCA from a floor vote.
The trade agreement will increase wages, increase GDP by $68.2 billion, and create 176,000 jobs, according to the International Trade Commission’s report. It will also increase U.S. exports to Canada by $19 billion, and to Mexico by $14 billion. The Tax Foundation estimates that these positive economic effects are identical to a 4% corporate tax cut.
The trade deal would also be a boon for the automotive industry. The Office of the United States Trade Representative estimates that USCMA ratification would add $34 billion in new automotive manufacturing investment, $23 billion in new annual purchases of U.S. automotive parts, and 76,000 jobs in the next five years.
Crucially, the USMCA protects American medical innovation by including 10 years of data protection for innovative biologic medicine. Strong protection for biologics is critical. Biologics are the next generation of medicines, and are more costly and complex to produce than other cures. Data protection recognizes the extraordinary time, resources, and opportunity cost that innovators must devote to go through the FDA approval process.
Finally, the USMCA would help American farmers. The increased market opportunities for Americans is projected to increase agriculture exports by more than $314 million. Through USMCA negotiations, Canada agreed to open market access to American farmers who wish to sell dairy, poultry, and eggs in Canada. In return, Canada will have access to American dairy and peanut products. The industry would benefit from stabilization of international markets, especially the U.S.’s two biggest trading partners that buy close to 2/3 of U.S. agricultural exports.
The evidence is clear –– swift passage of the USMCA would grow our economy, help American workers, and benefit small businesses all across the country. Pelosi should stop letting the most radical elements of the Democrat party have veto power over the USMCA and work with lawmakers from both sides of the aisle to swiftly ratify this important agreement.