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November 18, 2019

U.S. House Speaker: House Is Close To An Agreement On USMCA

Last Thursday, November 14, U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told reporters that a breakthrough in Democrats’ talks with the Trump administration on the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) could be “imminent” and that she would like to pass the deal by the end of 2019. Speaker Pelosi cautioned, “Again, it all comes down to … enforcement.” But she also said, “I do believe that if we can get this to the place it needs to be, which is imminent, that this can be a template for future trade agreements. I’d like to see us get it done this year; that would be my goal.”

House Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal (D-Mass.), who leads the Democratic caucus on this issue, also struck an optimistic note, saying “the proposal we have in front of us is substantially better than what we had in NAFTA.”

Additionally, at a House Democratic Caucus meeting later in the day Thursday, more than a dozen members discussed the agreement’s importance to their districts. Politico said, “The push marks the latest sign of moderate House members growing agitated over the lack of movement to get the deal passed.”

Also on Thursday, the House Problem Solvers Caucus, which is comprised of 24 Democrats and 24 House Republicans committed to forging bipartisan cooperation, issued a statement saying “both sides of the aisle should find a way to unite together behind passage of USMCA.”

Constituent engagement will be important to getting the trade deal over the finish line in the United States. Metals Service Center Institute (MSCI) members can use this link from the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) to contact members of the U.S. House and Senate ask them to pass the USMCA as quickly as possible. As a reminder, MSCI recently joined NAM and more than 350 other organizations to send a letter to lawmakers urging quick action to approve the trade pact.

The letter said, “North America is the most significant trade market for the United States globally, with Canada and Mexico purchasing one-fifth of the total value of U.S. manufacturing output. Canada and Mexico alone, despite representing less than four percent of the global economy, buy more U.S.-manufactured goods than our next 11 trading partners combined. Here at home, U.S. manufacturing exports to Canada and Mexico support millions of American manufacturing jobs as well as 40,000 small and medium-sized businesses and communities across all 50 states.”

Click here to view the letter and full list of signers.