Tri-state lawmakers react to first day of USMCA

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Courtesy of Senator Chuck Grassley

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement is replacing NAFTA in the trade agreement between the three countries. The deal takes effect on July 1. According to the White House, the agreement might boost the economy, create jobs, and generate trade.

Below are statements about USMCA from lawmakers representing the tri-state area.

Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa:

Today the United States, Mexico and Canada launch a new chapter in our historic partnership with entry into force of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA.

Thanks to the decisive leadership of President Trump, the USMCA will open the door for robust economic growth. After hard-fought negotiations steered by Ambassador Bob Lighthizer, the USMCA brings to bear a trilateral trade agreement that will lift prosperity across North America.

The USMCA paves the way for freer markets and fairer trade. It replaces NAFTA and puts America in a better position to expand market access for U.S. workers, farmers and businesses. Specifically, USMCA modernizes rules of origin for autos, sanitary and phytosanitary standards, intellectual property rules, digital trade, financial services, customs, labor, environment and more.

As we enter into this agreement, the world is navigating uncertain times. The unprecedented public health crisis has turned the economy upside down. Now more than ever, our farmers, businesses and workers need and deserve certainty they can count on to turn things around and accelerate the economic recovery. 

As chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, I’ll be keeping close eye on the implementation of this historic trade agreement. I want to ensure any kinks are ironed out with appropriate flexibility, taking into consideration unforeseen circumstances from the pandemic, such as auto makers and others who were shut down or repurposed operations to produce medical equipment, for example. I also will keep watch to hold accountable all stakeholders and ensure full compliance with the trade agreement. Now more than ever, North America must work together to harvest the fruits of the USMCA. That’s how we can foster investment, innovation and job creation for the 478 million people living in the United States, Mexico and Canada.

The U.S. International Trade Commission estimated the USMCA within five years would raise U.S. GDP by $68.2 billion, forecasting 176,000 new U.S. jobs. That’s music to the ears for everyone in America who has been hard hit from the pandemic’s economic fall-out.

Farmers in my state have enjoyed one of the best planting seasons in decades. However, our livestock, poultry and biofuels producers have faced catastrophic disruption to their operations since the virus swept across the country. Iowa is the nation’s number one producer of pork, eggs and corn. Our economy depends on exports to grow and flourish. America’s farmers depend on exports to pay their bills and earn a living. They want to grow and produce for the marketplace, not government bail-outs.

Today’s inauguration of the USMCA offers a bright ray of hope for North America to plow forward and plant the seeds for a robust economic recovery.  A rising tide lifts all boats. I’m confident the USMCA will steer America’s workers, farmers and businesses to better days ahead.

Sen. Chuck Grassley

Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa:

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds:

“USMCA is a historic agreement for Iowa families, farmers and small business owners. I’m grateful to President Trump, Ambassador Lighthizer and the entire administration for their unwavering commitment to getting this agreement done. 

“Canada and Mexico are our two largest trading partners with $6.6 billion in exports in 2018 alone. I look forward to USMCA opening new markets for high-quality Iowa exports, increasing wages, jobs, and economic activity. 

“With USMCA officially in force, our state and the entire nation will reap the benefits in the years to come.”

Gov. Kim Reynolds

Rep. Steve King of Iowa’s 4th District:

Rep. Cindy Axne of Iowa’s 3rd District:

Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska:

Today is a win for Nebraska’s farmers and ranchers: USMCA is officially on the books. NAFTA did a lot of good, but this new agreement modernizes our trading relationships with Mexico and Canada and increases business for Nebraska ag. There are more and better trade deals to fight for around the world, and we’ll do that work — but, for today, we should celebrate USMCA as good news for our state.

Sen. Ben Sasse

Rep. Don Bacon of Nebraska’s 2nd District:

Rep. Adrian Smith of Nebraska’s 3rd District:

After years of negotiating, legislating and implementing, today we see the fruits of our labor. This groundbreaking agreement with Canada and Mexico – who are not just our neighbors, but our two best customers– will bring benefits for Nebraska’s farmers, ranchers, manufacturers, and consumers for years to come.

However, our work is not done.  Kenya, the UK, and Japan all provide outstanding opportunities to develop first-rate trade agreements, and I look forward to working with the administration to continue finding new customers for Nebraska’s world-class production.

Rep. Adrian Smith

Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts:

Sen. John Thune of South Dakota:

Rep. Dusty Johnson of South Dakota’s At-Large District:

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem:

The USMCA is a major win for South Dakota producers, and I am grateful that it is finally taking effect. This agreement rebalances and modernizes the old rules of the road into a 21st Century, high-standard trade deal that better serves the interests of South Dakota farmers, ranchers, and businesspeople. It couldn’t come at a more crucial time as our producers look to recover from COVID-19.

Gov. Kristi Noem

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