House and White House reach deal on USMCA

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USMCA

A revised trade deal between the United States, Mexico and Canada received support from House Democrats after months of negotiations.

On Tuesday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) touted the revised trade agreement negotiated with the administration, according to The Wall Street Journal (subscription required).

The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement would create new intellectual property protections, require more North American parts to be used in automobiles to qualify for zero tariffs, open the Canadian milk market to U.S. farmers, and create new rules for e-commerce, according to The Washington Post.

It would also increase wages, benefits and safety rules for workers, and implement updated environmental protections.

The deal was seen as a victory for Republicans and Democrats, but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said the Senate won’t take up the trade agreement until President Trump’s impeachment trial is concluded.

“We will not be doing USMCA next week in the Senate,” McConnell said, according to Bloomberg.

McConnell has blamed Democrats for holding up the legislation as the party pressed for tighter labor standards and environmental protections, according to USA Today. On Tuesday, McConnell said that both the USMCA and the impeachment trial would be pushed until after the holidays.

“What is not possible obviously would be to turn to an impeachment trial or to do USMCA in the Senate before we break for Christmas,” McConnell said, according to the newspaper.

McConnell tweeted that the Democrats’ impeachment “obsession” has delayed crucial governing responsibilities.

Democrats responded by saying the House has passed hundreds of bills that have yet to be heard in the Senate — something they have dubbed McConnell’s “legislative graveyard.”

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