State Leaders Support USMCA

Author: Andy Koenig

State Leaders Support USMCA

Every state, from California to Alabama, will benefit from the passage of the USMCA, and state leaders across the country are already weighing in, urging Congress to approve the USMCA as soon as possible. Trade Works for America is continuing its work to build support for the USMCA at both the state and federal levels.

Recently, 25 lieutenant governors from 23 states and 2 territories wrote to President Trump in support of the USMCA:

“As lieutenant governors, one of our main responsibilities is to promote economic growth, and under the new provisions renegotiated in the USMCA, we believe this agreement will benefit all our states and improve trade conditions for the business community.”

Here’s what other state leaders from across the nation are saying about the USMCA:

“Completion of this fair, flexible trade agreement with our closest trading partners is vital, not only because free trade and strong relationships with neighboring allies are critical for peace and state economic prosperity, but it is critically important for our economy and Massachusetts jobs. The USMCA increases environmental and labor regulations, and incentivizes more domestic production of cars and trucks. The agreement also provides updated intellectual property protections, and gives the United States more access to Canada’s dairy market. To avoid the pitfalls of NAFTA and ensure our trading relationships keep up with modern times, the USMCA also requires that the agreement is reviewed every six years.”

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, April 5, 2019, letter to President Trump and congressional leaders

“The USMCA is important to Idaho because it preserves and enhances critical gains made in previous trade agreements for Idaho products’ market access. It would also create additional market access in Canada for Idaho dairy products. It would eliminate the Class 7 milk pricing system that created tremendous disadvantages to dairy processors in global markets. It also makes progress in the areas of labor, intellectual property, and digital trade.”

– Idaho Governor Brad Little, March 25, 2019, op-ed on the governor’s website

“Completion of a fair, flexible, and modernized trade agreement with our closest trading partners is essential, as free trade and strong relationships with neighboring allies are critical for peace and state economic prosperity. I stand ready to work with the President and Congress to ensure that the USMCA is ratified this year and that these damaging tariffs are lifted. Maryland looks forward to maintaining and strengthening our partnerships with Canada, Mexico and other important trade partners so we can continue thriving in the 21st century economy.”

– Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, March 11, 2019, letter to President Trump and congressional leaders

“The USMCA meets the needs of the 21st Century by providing stronger Rules of Origin, new provisions to protect intellectual property and trade in services, and new chapters that focus on digital trade and anticorruption. These critical updates help to modernize the rules of the game governing the trade relationship with Arizona’s most important trading partner in the world [Mexico].”

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey, February 28, 2019, letter to members of the Arizona congressional delegation

“Missouri agriculture is home to the largest concentration of animal health companies and plant scientists in the entire world. The agreement, as explained by U.S. trade officials, maintains zero tariffs on products traded between the U.S. and Mexico, and opens new opportunities for American dairy, poultry, egg and wheat producers in the Canadian market. We are also pleased negotiators have agreed to enhance standards for agriculture biotechnology to ensure the innovation that is so crucial to Missouri’s economy continues to flourish.”

– Missouri Governor Mike Parson and Missouri Department of Agriculture Director Chris Chinn, February 28, 2019, letter to members of Missouri’s congressional delegation

“…a ratified USMCA will be a win for all of us. I don’t know of a single governor that doesn’t want this deal to be ratified immediately. The Trump administration has effectively used the tactical tool of tariffs to bring other economies to the negotiating table. This is a means to an end. That end is clearly in sight.”

– Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin, February 25, 2019, op-ed in The Lane Report

“The outlook for agricultural trade has never looked brighter…the USMCA will create new market access opportunities for United States exports like dairy, poultry, and eggs…we’re going to work with President Trump and Secretary Perdue to support the new USMCA and advocate for American trade. This is a great moment for America.”

– Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller, February 25, 2019, in a speech before the Southern United States Trade Association

“Virginia maintains a longstanding commitment to work collaboratively with its North American counterparts on agricultural trade and development. The USMCA is vital to further solidifying Virginia’s trade relationships with its North American partners, as Virginia exports approximately $276 million and $113 million in food and agriculture products to Canada and Mexico, respectively.”

– Commissioner of the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Dr. Jewel Bronaugh, in a March 21, 2019, statement

“I’m pleased that Canada and Mexico have taken this important step in the right direction toward fair trade and increased market access for American farmers and ranchers. The deal includes key provisions increasing markets for U.S. rice, wheat, dairy, poultry, eggs and many other agricultural products. I’m hopeful the USMCA deal will fuel a renewed effort to improve trade tensions with China, a major agricultural market for Louisiana behind Canada and Mexico. I urge the U.S. Congress to ratify the USMCA, eliminating tariffs on more than 200 American products and providing a new and improved avenue for trade and economic growth.”

– Louisiana Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry Mike Strain, D.V.M., in a March 21, 2019, statement

“The USMCA will benefit agriculture by providing trade certainty and enhancing market access for Mississippi farmers.”

– Mississippi Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce Andy Gipson, in a March 21, 2019 statement

“The USMCA is vital to further solidifying Arizona’s trade relationships with Canada and Mexico,” Killian said. “Agriculture brings in $ 23 billion annually to the State of Arizona.”

– Director of the Arizona Department of Agriculture Mark Killian, in a March 21, 2019, statement

Even though these officials represent very different states and territories, they all agree that the USMCA is a strong trade agreement and a great deal for their states and their constituents.

Click here to get involved in the Trade Works for America Coalition.

Andy Koenig
Senior Advisor, Trade Works for America