Bipartisan Trade Bill a Boon to American Farmers, Manufacturers, Small Business Owners
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made the following remarks on the Senate floor regarding the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act:
“Once we do pass the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act, the Senate will take up another measure designed to hold the Administration accountable: the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act.
“This bipartisan bill is about a lot more than just expanding Congress’ oversight authority though.
“It’s about delivering prosperity for the Middle Class and supporting jobs.
“It’s about helping American workers sell more of what they make, and farmers sell more of what they grow”
“And it’s about eliminating unfair rules in other countries that discriminate against American workers and American jobs.”
“Remember: The United States already has one of the most open markets in the world. But other countries maintain unfair barriers against American goods and services—barriers that trade agreements can reduce or eliminate, to make things fairer for America.
“That’s why the United States is currently involved in negotiations with Europe and several nations in the Pacific, like Japan, in order to break down barriers to goods stamped ‘Made in America.’
“One estimate shows that trade agreements with Europe and the Pacific could support as many as 1.4 million additional jobs in our country — including over 18,000 in Kentucky alone.
“But in order to get there, we’ll first need to lay down some clear and fair rules of the road for our trade negotiators.
“That’s what the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act would do.
“It would make Congress’ priorities clear, issuing specific objectives for the Administration's trade negotiators.
“It would mandate transparency, forcing the Administration to consult regularly with Congress and stakeholders.
“And it would reaffirm the supremacy of this body, requiring our explicit approval before trade agreements are enacted.
“The Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act is good, bipartisan legislation that was endorsed overwhelmingly in the Finance Committee, 20 votes to 6.
“It’s good for the Middle Class. It’s good for manufacturing. It’s good for farmers too.
“Here’s what one Kentucky constituent — a corn, wheat, and soybean farmer from Spencer County — recently wrote to say on the issue:
“‘We need free trade to compete with the grain farms in South America,’ he wrote. ‘Dozens of people have jobs as a direct result of our small business: input suppliers, truckers, mechanics and traders, just to name a few.’
“‘Help me and all these people,’ he implored, ‘by expanding trade and consumption globally. Our future depends on it.’
“I couldn’t agree more. Our future does depend on cultivating better opportunities for American goods, American crops, and American workers in the 21st Century.
“I look forward to the Senate turning to Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act soon.”
Related Issues: Middle Class, Free Trade, Iran, Economy, Trade Promotion Authority, Iran Nuclear Deal, Jobs, TPP