Failure to Move on Trade Hurts Agriculture

Three Republican members of the House Ways and Means Committee—Dave Camp (Mich.), Frank Lucas (Okla.) and Kevin Brady (Texas)—issued a news release yesterday marking the third anniversary of a bipartisan compromise on a new framework designed to move America’s trade policy forward. In addition, the three announced a new report showing the harm suffered by American agriculture due to a failure to move forward on pending trade agreements.

Camp said that although it has been three years since the bipartisan trade framework compromise, “the trade agenda has collapsed.” He blamed the administration and congressional Democrats. “American workers are worse off and falling further behind our competitors, as shown by the study that we released today. With over 15 million Americans unemployed, workers don’t need more talk about expanding exports to create jobs; they need us to actually create those jobs by finding a path forward on the pending trade agreements with Colombia, South Korea and Panama.”

Lucas called exports “critical to the vitality of rural America. They add much needed capital in rural communities for reinvestment and economic development. American farmers and ranchers work hard to produce an abundant supply of food and fiber for the U.S. and the world, which is evident by the fact that the agricultural industry has historically maintained a trade surplus. However, American farmers and ranchers lose economic opportunities every day that Congress fails to pass the Colombian free trade agreement.”


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