(NAFB) — An American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) official says there could be an early push to win Senate passage of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) ahead of an impeachment trial. AFBF senior congressional relations director Dave Salmonsen says early Senate USMCA action is possible, given house speaker Nancy Pelosi’s holding back impeachment articles against the president.
“If the impeachment trial is pending for a few weeks, perhaps they could move ahead and take care of this, sooner rather than later. I think, we know the idea certainly is that they will have USMCA passed and to the president before the state of the union, which again, now, is in the beginning of February.”
He says the full Senate could take up USMCA right after committee action next week, without waiting a statutory 15-days allowed before a vote. And approval seems likely, despite some GOP rumblings the White House gave too much to house democrats on Mexican labor standards.
“I think there’s overall, very strong support on both sides of the aisle in the Senate, for doing USMCA, for getting our trade back into a certain measure and moving ahead with the benefits USMCA brings.”
Salmonsen said those benefits would happen quickly, as USMCA replaces the 25-year old North American Free Trade Agreement. Mexico has already ratified the revised USMCA, and Canada is expected to do so late this month. The deal is worth an estimated $2.2 billion in new U.S. farm exports.
Source: National Association of Farm Broadcasters