01.15.20

Peters Delivers Remarks in Support of USMCA, Renegotiated NAFTA Update

Peters Will Vote for Agreement on Senate Floor

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Gary Peters (MI) today delivered remarks supporting the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), the renegotiated North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). During his remarks at a Senate Commerce Committee hearing considering the agreement, Peters highlighted why Michigan workers, farmers and businesses need a new trade deal that advances their interests. Peters will vote in favor of the USMCA when it comes before the full Senate for a vote, which is expected as early as tomorrow. Peters previously announced his support for the agreement last month.

“The manufacturers and entrepreneurs that call Michigan home form the backbone of our state’s economy – and I am committed to supporting trade deals that work for our state’s businesses, workers and families,” said Senator Peters. “The USMCA is not perfect – but it is stronger than the initial deal the Administration initially announced – and it has been improved over the last few months. It includes provisions I pushed for to strengthen enforcement and labor standards – and I believe it will make some progress for Michigan workers, businesses and farmers. That is why I voted yes today on this implementing bill and plan to vote yes on the floor.” 

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Click here to watch Senator Peters’ remarks.

Below are Senator Peters’ remarks as delivered:

“Thank you Chairman Wicker.

“I support trade policies that benefit domestic production, American interests and especially U.S. workers.

“There’s no doubt that trade agreements have the potential to grow our economy and open up new markets for American companies and agricultural producers.

“Unfortunately, many aspects of our current trade policy often do not contain adequate safeguards for protecting U.S. workers and businesses.

“Too often, countries with poor labor standards circumvent international trade laws manipulate their currencies and exploit new loopholes in these agreements, harming the livelihoods of hardworking Michiganders and Americans.

“The manufacturers and entrepreneurs that call Michigan home form the backbone of our state’s economy, and I am committed to supporting trade deals that work for our state’s businesses, workers and families.

“That is why I have long said that we needed to renegotiate NAFTA to help level the playing field for Michigan.

“The USMCA is not perfect, but it is stronger than the initial deal the Administration initially announced. And it has been improved over the last few months.

“It includes provisions I pushed for to strengthen enforcement and labor standards, and I believe it will make some progress for Michigan workers, businesses and farmers.

“That is why I voted yes today on this implementing bill and plan to vote yes on the floor.

“Our work is not over, however.

“Congress must ensure that current and future Administrations vigorously enforce USMCA and we must properly review it in the near future to make sure that’s it’s working in America’s best interests.

“I will continue to support commonsense legislation to make sure that our country’s trade policy benefits American workers and will continue to provide the necessary oversight.

“Thank you, and I yield back.”

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