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Monday, December 09, 2019

Trump Will Exclude Democrats From Trade Deal Signing Ceremony

Donald Trump plans to host a bill signing ceremony today for the United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement, the renegotiated North American free trade agreement, which passed earlier in January.

However, despite the fact that many House Democrats — including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi — were essential to passing the deal, they will not be at the bill signing ceremony, because Trump refused to invite them, Politico reported.

So the president will take a victory lap on the trade agreement — but not alongside Democratic lawmakers who worked on provisions for the bill that helped it soar to passage.

“It’s a little petty of him,” Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX) told Politico. “Actually, there were more Democrats who voted in favor than Republicans in the House side.”

Cuellar is right.

The House passed the USMCA on Dec. 19 with 193 votes from Democrats and 192 from Republicans.

Democrats spent months amending the trade agreement, adding provisions to ensure fair labor standards to prevent companies from outsourcing some jobs to Mexico. House Democrats also removed a provision they said would increase drug costs.

The snub comes as Trump fumes about impeachment. Currently, Trump’s defense team is making the case for why Trump shouldn’t be removed from office — making illogical arguments and focusing on debunked conspiracy theories in the process.

Ultimately, Trump wants to take credit for the trade deal in order to boost his reelection chances in November. And inviting Democrats to the signing ceremony to recognize their contributions to the trade agreement does not stick to his attack-Democrats-at-all-costs strategy.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.

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