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Trump expected to rescind NAFTA to force passage of USMCA

4 December 2018, at 12:00am

The Vice President of the Canadian Global Affairs Institute expects the US President to rescind the North American Free Trade Agreement to Pressure Congress into passing the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement.

Last week the United States, Canada and Mexico signed the USMCA.

Colin Robertson, the Vice President and a fellow of the Canadian Global Affairs Institute, notes it still has to be sealed by the legislatures in all three countries and, while he doesn't anticipate problems in Canada or Mexico, the big question is the American Congress.

Mr Robertson said, "By the time Donald Trump's implementing legislation and that's the key here, is introduced into the Congress, you'll have a Democratic majority in the House of Representatives and that's a shift as a result of the November elections."

The new Congress takes office 3 January, he noted.

Mr Robertson continued, "It shouldn't be a problem in the Senate where Donald Trump has a slim majority but in the House, even if all the Republicans vote for it, they'll have to pick up at least 20 or 25 Democrats to support it as well.

"In many ways he's in the same situation that Bill Clinton was in 1994 when he wanted to implement the original North American Free Trade Agreement and most Democrats in the House of Representatives voted against the NAFTA but a majority of Republicans supported it and he was able to secure enough Democratic votes for it to pass in both the House and the Senate.

"But, of course, the relationship between Democrats and Donald Trump is pretty frayed and Nancy Pelosi, who is likely to be the next speaker of the House of Representatives may decide to take a page from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's book who, when Barack Obama, was President of the United States, basically refused to pass anything that had Barack Obama's support behind it."

Mr Robertson expects Donald Trump to finally act on his threat to rescind the NAFTA when he introduces legislation to implement the USMCA to pressure Congress to move on the new agreement within six months.

As reported by Bruce Cochrane for

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