Vice President Mike Pence met with a pair of Florida congressman and a businessman in Jacksonville Monday to discuss the significance and urgency of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).
U.S. Reps. Michael Waltz and John Rutherford, both Republicans, included Correct Craft President Bill Yeargin in the Jacksonville conversation to examine trade relations with our nation's neighbors, Canada and Mexico -- and to urge Democrats not to sit on the implementation bill.
“The USMCA levels the playing field for Florida’s workers,” Waltz said in a written statement from his office. “For far too long, our trade relationships with Mexico and Canada were exploited and unenforceable. The USMCA closes those loopholes that China and bad actors leveraged to the detriment of American jobs and wages.”
Leaders of the three countries involved signed the USMCA on Nov. 30, 2018, but the Agreement must be approved by Congress to go into effect. The USMCA includes rules of origin, market access, intellectual property rights, agriculture, digital trade and labor provisions.
Florida exported $6.7 billion in goods to Canada and Mexico in 2017, with transportation equipment cited as the top export to the two countries. Under the USMCA, companies will be incentivized to invest and produce materials domestically, the statement claims.
Waltz encouraged House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., to put the implementation bill up for a vote in the U.S. House of Representatives so it can be sent to the Senate for approval.
“Congress has a responsibility by law and to the American worker to approve the agreement,” Waltz said. “I urge Speaker Pelosi to put it up on the House floor for a vote instead of grandstanding and dragging her feet on another President Trump success.”
Waltz represents CD 6, which includes Flagler and Volusia and portions of Lake and St. Johns counties.