Chairman Blumenauer Statement on New NAFTA Trade Agreement
December 11, 2019
Congressman Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), Chairman of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Trade, today issued the following statement on the preliminary NAFTA 2.0 agreement secured by House Democrats.
“NAFTA has failed to live up to its promises for workers, and the NAFTA 2.0 agreement submitted to Congress by Trump was a mixed bag. This new agreement was a huge victory for Democrats, who insisted that radical change over old NAFTA be made and demanded that we set a new template for all future trade agreements.
In my role as Trade Subcommittee chair and member of Speaker Pelosi’s working group tasked with taking on pharmaceuticals, major reforms to the biologics provisions was a top priority of mine. I am proud of the work we did to strip Trump’s sweetheart deal for big pharma, which was defeated for the first time ever in a trade agreement by stripping out language that would have protected their patents. We were also able to secure a first-of-its-kind rapid-response labor enforcement mechanism, and provide new resources for enforcement of environmental protections.
While this is no panacea, helping workers, the environment, and consumers have been Democratic priorities for decades. This agreement is a vast improvement over NAFTA and Trump’s original agreement.”