President Trump: The US Returns to a “Manufacturing Powerhouse”
Monday, US President Donald Trump on celebrated the revised North American trade deal with Canada and Mexico as a return of the United States to a “manufacturing powerhouse,” vowing to sign the agreement by late November.
But the President noted that the deal needs to be ratified by Congress, a step that could be complicated by the outcome of the Fall congressional elections. The ratification would be granted if US lawmakers take the correct action.
“Anything you submit to Congress is trouble no matter what,” President Trump said, predicting that Democrats would say, “Trump likes it so we’re not going to approve it.”
Trump embraced the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement during a Rose Garden ceremony, branding the pact the “USMCA.” The president said the name has a “good ring to it,” repeating U-S-M-C-A several times.
The agreement was forged just before a Midnight deadline imposed by the US to include Canada in a deal reached with Mexico late in the Summer. It replaces the 24-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), a job-wrecking disaster that has hollowed out the nation’s industrialized base.
Flanked by his Cabinet members, President Trump said the pact is the “most important deal we’ve ever made by far,” covering $1.2-T in trade. The President said his administration had not yet agreed to lift tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Canada, a contentious issue between the two neighbors.
For President Trump, the agreement reached in the weeks before the November congressional elections is vindication for his hard-line trade policies that have soured relations with China, and the EU.
President Trump’s advisers view the trade pact as a political winner in Midwest battleground states critical to the President’s 2016 victory and home to tens of thousands of auto workers and manufacturers who could benefit from the changes.
President Trump said he would sign the final agreement in late November, and the pact is expected to be signed by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and outgoing Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto before he leaves office on 1 December.
Pena Nieto will be replaced by President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, whose incoming administration said the deal would offer more certainty for financial markets, investment and job creation.
Ratifying the deal is likely to stretch into Y 2019 because once President Trump and the leaders from Canada and Mexico sign the agreement, the administration and congressional leaders will need to write legislation to implement the deal and win passage in Congress.
Promises Made, Promises Kept