“When the United States enters into foreign trade agreements, it must be with the goal of helping American families, protecting and creating jobs, and improving labor and environmental standards. After months of tough negotiations, House Democrats secured landmark changes to the new United States-Mexico-Canada trade agreement, USMCA. This trade deal is now measurably stronger than the original agreement put forward by the Trump administration in 2018 and the original NAFTA deal that it will replace. 

Some of the advancements we were able to secure include stronger rules to protect workers from violence and exploitation and tough new tools to ensure compliance with labor reforms. The agreement also codifies compliance with several international environmental protection treaties and establishes environment-focused monitoring that will regularly review Mexico’s environmental laws, regulations, and practices. Furthermore, it eliminates unfair hand-outs to big corporations, and secures provisions to lower drug costs and improve access to lifesaving medicines. Most importantly, the agreement includes first-of-their-kind enforcement mechanisms to ensure that the protections agreed to on paper will be enforced. 

Because the renegotiated agreement represents a significant improvement on NAFTA, I voted in support of the USMCA. However, we must also acknowledge that USMCA could, and should go further when it comes to fighting the urgent threat of climate change and improving the quality of life for workers. We must keep fighting to improve policies in these areas, both in the United States and with our global partners.”