Pro-trade group launches media buy as Trump and Democrats near deal on new NAFTA

Pro-trade group launches media buy as Trump and Democrats near deal on new NAFTA
© Getty Images

Trade Works for America, a group aiming to secure passage of President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump's newest Russia adviser, Andrew Peek, leaves post: report Hawley expects McConnell's final impeachment resolution to give White House defense ability to motion to dismiss Trump rips New York City sea wall: 'Costly, foolish' and 'environmentally unfriendly idea' MORE's trade agreement with Mexico and Canada, launched a new six-figure media buy on Tuesday as a last effort to get the deal across the finish line.

The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) is the renegotiated North American Free Trade Agreement deal and President Trump said on Monday that “a lot of strides” had been made towards an agreement. 

The White House, House Democrats and labor officials have been negotiating parts of the deal and have indicated that the deal is in its final stages.

ADVERTISEMENT

“At this point, the ball is on the two-yard line we just need to punch it into the end zone,” Trade Works for America co-chairman Phil Cox, a GOP operative, told The Hill. “I think this could be the extra push that we need. This is in response to the dynamics that we’re seeing in front of us and how close we believe this deal is to getting done.”

The new media buy is part of a multimillion-dollar, nationwide ad campaign to educate workers, job creators and lawmakers about the benefits of the USMCA. The campaign is focused on educating and mobilizing voters outside the D.C.-area.

“We are really focused on 35 or so tier-one House districts. The focus at this point is on constituent activation, not persuasion,” Cox said.

The group has been targeting Democrats in districts that Trump won in 2016 or highly competitive districts in 2020 but, as some Democrats have expressed support for the deal, they have shifted their resources into districts where members haven’t made a public statement of support.

The new ads target 35 members, including Democratic Reps. Jennifer WextonJennifer Lynn WextonVirginia governor seeking to remove Robert E. Lee statue from US Capitol Virginia lawmakers ask governor to remove state's Robert E. Lee statue from US Capitol Pro-trade group launches media buy as Trump and Democrats near deal on new NAFTA MORE (Va.), Colin Allred (Texas) and Debbie DingellDeborah (Debbie) Ann DingellMaking waves to protect America's waters Trump suggests LBJ is in hell: 'He's probably looking down — or looking up' 10 controversies that rocked the Trump White House in 2019 MORE (Mich.). GOP Rep. Matt GaetzMatthew (Matt) GaetzGaetz in Twitter battle with Florida House Republican Apple under pressure to unlock Pensacola shooter's phones Conservatives slam Warren's call to put transgender women in women's prisons MORE (Fla.) is the only Republican targeted.

ADVERTISEMENT

“We want to make sure we’re not taking anyone for granted regardless of party affiliation,” Cox said.

They are digital activation ads with the goal of generating calls and emails to members of Congress with pro-USMCA material until there is a vote in the House. Trade Works for America estimates it will contact about 20,000 new voters from the ad.

“We’re cautiously optimistic we will see a deal before the and of the year. Speaker (Nancy) Pelosi and Chairman (Richard) Neal have said they’re on a path to yes. Now it's time to get off the path and get the USMCA done,” Cox said.

Trade Works for America was announced in February but officially launched with the announcement of its co-chairs in March. Former Sen. Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampSusan Collins set to play pivotal role in impeachment drama Pro-trade group launches media buy as Trump and Democrats near deal on new NAFTA The Hill's Morning Report — Biden steadies in third debate as top tier remains the same MORE (D-N.D.), who lost her reelection campaign in November is a co-chairwoman, alongside Cox.

The group ran ads targeting four lawmakers— Republican Rep. Tim WalbergTimothy (Tim) Lee WalbergHillicon Valley: Facebook to still allow misinformation in ads under new rules | New child privacy bill in House | Election vendors support more federal oversight House lawmakers introduce bill to protect children's privacy online Pro-trade group launches media buy as Trump and Democrats near deal on new NAFTA MORE (Mich.) and freshman Democratic Reps. Elissa SlotkinElissa Slotkin Democrats plot new approach to win over rural voters Iran resolution supporters fear impeachment will put it on back burner Hillicon Valley: Biden calls for revoking tech legal shield | DHS chief 'fully expects' Russia to try to interfere in 2020 | Smaller companies testify against Big Tech 'monopoly power' MORE (Mich.), Xochitl Torres Small (N.M.) and Josh Harder (Calif.), in March.