U.S. Rep. Rick Crawford, R-Jonesboro, told Talk Business & Politics he doesn't think the agreement will be decided during the lame duck session of Congress, but it could be considered in the first couple of months after the New Year.
"Revamping the new trade agreement was aimed to preserve the view of an integrated North America with the firm belief that together we are stronger and more competitive", he said in remarks translated from Spanish.
On Saturday, Trump told reporters he planned to give formal notice of his intentions to withdraw from NAFTA, which would give American lawmakers six months to approve the USMCA or have no free-trade pact with Canada and Mexico. I understand the president said it's final.
If Trump ends NAFTA, Congress would have 60 days to approve USMCA or both trade deals would be void.
The move is to force acceptance of Trump's replacement for NAFTA, the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMACA), which he signed with Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexico's President Enrique Peña Nieto in Buenos Aires on the 30th of November.
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Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who is presumed to be the next speaker of the House of Representatives, indicated Friday that House Democrats weren't ready to give their support to this deal yet.
AP via CP Former President of Mexico Enrique Pena Nieto, left, U.S. President Donald Trump, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, participate in the USMCA signing ceremony, November 30, 2018 in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Trump said Friday that he did not foresee a problem with getting congressional approval, but some Democrats - who will control the US House of Representatives as of January - have expressed skepticism.
What has Congress said about this?
Thus, even though its been signed, it still faces major hurdles, particularly in the US where Congressional Democrats are cool to the proposed agreement.
Although the three country leaders agreed to the new terms, lawmakers in each country still need to ratify the deal.