Lawmakers from our region among 10 'no' votes on USMCA

Published: Jan. 16, 2020 at 9:01 AM EST
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The U.S. Senate on Thursday overwhelmingly approved President Donald Trump's USMCA trade deal that rewrites the rules of trade with Canada and Mexico, but some lawmakers from our region were among the senators who did not support it.

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vermont, and Sens. Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, D-New York, were among the 10 no-votes.

In a statement, Sanders said the agreement will not be good for the environment or labor. "Trade is a good thing, but it has got to be fair. But this trade agreement does not accomplish that end," Sanders said. "There is no doubt in my mind that we need to fundamentally rewrite our disastrous trade agreements and create and protect good-paying American jobs, to improve the environment and combat climate change, and to stop the destructive race to the bottom."

In a statement, Schumer said despite improvements Democrats secured to better protect workers, he couldn't support USMCA. "Despite the fact that it includes very good labor provisions, I am voting against USMCA because it does not address climate change, the greatest threat facing the planet."

Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vermont, and Sens. Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan, D-New Hampshire, voted yes on the trade deal.

The House passed the bill in December so the measure now goes to Trump for his signature. It would replace the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement, known as NAFTA.

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