07.17.19

Gardner Urges Swift Ratification of USMCA


Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Cory Gardner (R-CO) took to the Senate floor yesterday to urge swift ratification of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). The USMCA is a proposed trade agreement among the three countries supporting North American manufacturing and fair trade. Senator Gardner has called for modernization of the NAFTA agreement. Mexico was the first country to ratify the agreement on June 19, 2019.

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NOTE: Click here or the picture above to download Gardner’s floor remarks.

Colorado’s workforce is made up of a quarter million jobs that are related to trade with Mexico and Canada, creating nearly $5 billion in GDP. Some of Colorado’s top exports to Canada and Mexico include potatoes, leather goods, beverage products, machinery, chemicals, computer and electronic products, plastics and rubber products, and nonmetallic mineral products.

“USMCA is incredibly important to the state of Colorado. Colorado is a pro-trade state; we have more than 750,000 trade-related jobs,” said Senator Gardner. “We know that USMCA is a better opportunity for us to gain even more jobs, more income, more opportunity for the people of Colorado. I hope that our colleagues in the House will hear this call to a brighter economic future, more trade opportunities, and greater U.S. leadership.”

Transcript as delivered below:

Thank you to my colleague from North Dakota, Madam President, and to our colleague from Vermont for the accommodation for this extra time.

USMCA is incredibly important to the state of Colorado. Colorado is a pro-trade state, we have about 750,000 trade-related jobs in Colorado. Of those 750,000 jobs, almost 250,000 of those jobs are related to trade with Mexico and Canada.

Nearly a quarter million of Colorado’s workers are there because of trade with Canada and Mexico. It’s nearly a five billion dollar share of our economy, that’s the total number of goods and services and exports to Canada and Mexico. That was just a couple of years ago so that number has obviously increased in value.

Of the potatoes that Mexico imports from the United States, nearly half of the potatoes that Mexico gets come from Colorado.

If you look at beverages, 97% of the beverages that Mexico imports come from Colorado.

If you look at crowns, closures, seals, 96% of those items imported by Mexico come from Colorado.

If you look at miscellaneous leather products, if you look at the hides and other products that Mexico imports, 87% of them come from Colorado.

We know that NAFTA has created thousands of jobs in Colorado. We know it has added thousands of dollars to people’s income, and we know that USMCA is a better, stronger opportunity for us to gain even more jobs, more income, more opportunity for the people of Colorado.

And so I thank Senator Hoeven for bringing people together on the floor to talk about the importance of free trade and particularly the passage of USMCA.

And I hope that our colleagues in the House will hear this call to a brighter economic future, more trade opportunities, greater U.S. leadership – by moving with the USMCA, adopting it, putting it forward so that the Senate can act on it, and getting this agreement into law so that we can actually once again start rebuilding opportunities with trade.

So I am strongly supportive of this effort. It is good for Colorado; it’s good for this country.

I thank both my colleague from North Dakota and my colleague from Vermont.

Links:
Colorado USMCA Fact Sheet
USTR Fact Sheet

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Cory Gardner is a member of the U.S. Senate serving Colorado. He sits on the Energy & Natural Resources Committee, the Foreign Relations Committee, the Commerce, Science, & Transportation Committee, and is the Chairman of the Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cybersecurity Policy.