On Tuesday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that House Democrats and the White House have reached a deal with ratifying USMCA.
For more than a year, Democrats have been concerned about labor enforcement to replace NAFTA.
Many sectors of the ag industry have been pushing for USMCA passage for months. In September, all former U.S. Secretaries of Agriculture since the Reagan administration announced their support for the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement.
There has been overwhelming support now that the deal is one step closer to being signed.
Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue calls this a “big win” for workers and the economy, but especially for rural America.
“USMCA is a big win for American workers and the economy, especially for our farmers and ranchers. The agreement improves virtually every component of the old NAFTA, and the agriculture industry stands to gain significantly,” said Secretary Perdue in a statement. “President Trump and Ambassador Lighthizer are laying the foundation for a stronger farm economy through USMCA and I thank them for all their hard work and perseverance to get the agreement across the finish line. While I am very encouraged by today’s breakthrough, we must not lose sight – the House and Senate need to work diligently to pass USMCA by Christmas.”
American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy DuVall said in part, “Ratification of the USMCA would build on the momentum of the U.S.-Japan agreement, which gave a major boost to American agricultural products in our fourth-largest market, and send a signal that the U.S. is back in business in the international marketplace.”
Matt Frostic, president of the Michigan Corn Growers Association responded to the news by saying,
“Passing the USMCA has been a top legislative priority for Michigan farmers this year and today’s announcement is an important step toward achieving that goal. Mexico and Canada are our closest neighbors and our top export markets for corn and ethanol respectively. After a rough year for Michigan agriculture, the passage of USMCA would be some much-needed good news that would provide some certainty and stability in agricultural trade.”
In a statement, Kevin Ross, president of the National Corn Growers Association said, “NCGA’s top legislative priority in 2019 has been passing USMCA. Today’s announcement brings us one step closer to ratifying this important agreement and securing the future of our trading relationship with Mexico and Canada, the top export market for U.S. corn farmers. It’s been a brutal year for many farmers who really need the certainty this would provide for agricultural trade.”