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Trade Agreement

Trade Agreement

Democrats, White House forge new North American trade deal; cattle group says it needs COOL


The Associated Press & Gary Matthews - December 10, 2019

WASHINGTON, D.C. - House Democrats and the White House have announced agreement on a modified North American trade pact, handing President Donald Trump a major Capitol Hill win.

This comes on the same day that Democrats announced their impeachment charges against the president. Both sides hailed the revamped U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement as a significant improvement over the original North American Free Trade Agreement, with Democrats said they won stronger provisions on enforcing the agreement.

Republicans said it will help keep the economy humming along. Trump said the revamped U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement will “be great" for the U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says a vote on the deal would likely occur after an expected impeachment trial in the Senate.

Meanwhile, some ag groups are concerned about the deal.

RCALF-USA says they believe it will provide windfall profits for Agribusiness giants at the expense of America’s hard-working cattle farmers and ranchers.

Bill Bullard, with RCALF-USA, says  "Although the U.S. cattle industry is the largest segment of American agriculture, making it an unsurpassed economic cornerstone for Rural America, the proposed USMCA does absolutely nothing to change provisions impacting cattle and beef trade between the United States, Canada and Mexico.”

Bullard says the new USMCA is worse than the old NAFTA because ranchers received the tool they needed to finally compete against the growing volume of cheaper imported beef and cattle from Canada and Mexico. That tool, mandatory Country of Origin Labeling, or COOL, allows ranchers to compete against the undifferentiated cattle and beef flowing into the country.

 



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