December 9, 2019
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USMCA deal reportedly reached between the president and House Democrats

House Democrats and top national labor leaders have reportedly come to an agreement with the White House over the United States-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement (USMCA), the replacement for the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

While the reported agreement is a key milestone, there is still more progress needed. Details haven't been finalized, any final deal will still need to be submitted by the U.S. Trade Representative to Congress as implementing legislation, and no vote has been scheduled.

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka planned to brief his executive council today on the proposed changes to the new North American trade pact, Politico reports, "offering the latest sign that a compromise deal is in its final stages."

Coming to agreement on a deal would be a victory both for President Donald Trump and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.

Over the weekend, the Seattle Times Editorial Board strongly urged Gov. Jay Inslee and the state's members of Congress to support the measure: "Washington’s delegation and Inslee appreciate the importance of trade and jobs it creates in the state. They should press for a vote on USMCA in the coming weeks."

AWB members had the same message last week during meetings with members of Congress in Washington, D.C. The USMCA was a frequent topic of conversation with lawmakers from both sides of the aisle, with lawmakers all giving a variation of the phrase, "I hope we can get to yes."

Contact Amy Anderson, AWB government affairs director for federal issues, to learn more.

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Spreading Christmas Joy

Vote on U.S., Mexico, Canada trade agreement for the sake of Washington's economic growth

By The Seattle Times Editorial Board

Washington's Congressional delegation and Gov. Jay Inslee should advocate strongly for prompt approval of the new trade agreement between the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

The nearly complete agreement is enormously important to Washington's economic growth and job creation. The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) also substantially improves environmental and labor protections over NAFTA, the 1994 agreement it will replace...

Inslee's support is important. He was a strong advocate for NAFTA while in Congress in the 1990s.

But campaigning for president last summer, Inslee was skeptical of USMCA, siding with wary unions and environmental groups seeking more aggressive mandates...

With Inslee now seeking another term leading trade-dependent Washington, he should be more publicly supportive of progress USMCA makes and benefits it would bring the entire state.

Read the full editorial in The Seattle Times
Speak up

Survey on Snake River dams is online. Help protect the region's economy and fill it out

By The Tri-City Herald Editorial Board

We know December's to-do list is already long, but we've got an important task that must be added to your check-off list: Please fill out the state survey on the Snake River dams.

It can be found at

Don't delay.

We have been critical of this state effort since its proposal nearly a year ago, but now that written comments are being taken we encourage people to fill out the survey and let their voices be heard.

Read the full editorial in the Tri-City Herald.