Republican governors press Congress to pass NAFTA replacement

Republican governors press Congress to pass NAFTA replacement
© MARTIN BERNETTI/AFP/Getty Images

The Republican Governors Association (RGA) on Thursday sent a letter to congressional leaders urging them to pass the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump fires intelligence community inspector general who flagged Ukraine whistleblower complaint Trump organization has laid off over 1000 employees due to pandemic: report Trump invokes Defense Production Act to prevent export of surgical masks, gloves MORE’s trade pact proposed to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement. 

The letter comes as congressional Republicans had expressed concerns over passing the deal amid opposition to the White House’s threat of tariffs on Mexico over immigration and as Democrats slam the agreement’s environmental and labor clauses.

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“Completion of the trade agreement is critical to our states as we seek to boost economic development and encourage new investment that leads to job creation,” the RGA members wrote in unanimous agreement.

“As chief executives of our states, we urge Congress to pass the USMCA quickly so American workers can begin reaping the benefits of improved trade with our North American neighbors. Passing the agreement quickly will give our small and large businesses the stability and predictability they need to expand, invest, and create more jobs.”

The White House is leaning heavily on its allies in Congress to push through the trade agreement, with U.S. Trade Representative Robert LighthizerRobert (Bob) Emmet LighthizerGOP senator warns quick vote on new NAFTA would be 'huge mistake' Pelosi casts doubt on USMCA deal in 2019 Pelosi sounds hopeful on new NAFTA deal despite tensions with White House MORE visiting Capitol Hill on Tuesday to again pitch the deal.

The letter comes one day after Mexico’s Senate overwhelmingly approved the pact and as Canadian Prime Minister Justin TrudeauJustin Pierre James TrudeauTrump invokes Defense Production Act to prevent export of surgical masks, gloves Canada's Trudeau says US blockage of medical exports would be a mistake Trudeau worried supplies meant for Canada have been diverted to US MORE is also expected to press Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiTrump says he opposes mail-in voting for November On The Money: Economy sheds 701K jobs in March | Why unemployment checks could take weeks | Confusion surrounds 9B in small-business loans The bipartisan neutering of the Congressional Budget Office MORE (D-Calif.) to back the deal during a meeting Thursday.