Dec 20, 2019

Sanders blasts USMCA free trade deal for not mentioning climate change

Sen. Bernie Sanders said at the Democratic debate on Thursday night that the USMCA free trade deal that President Trump negotiated is a "modest improvement" over NAFTA, but that he will not vote for it because it will not stop outsourcing to Mexico and does not mention climate change.

Why it matters: The House overwhelmingly passed the USMCA on Thursday after Democrats secured certain labor provisions. Passing the deal is one of Trump's top policy goals of 2019 and is tailor-made for protectionist Democrats, but Sanders — who has long opposed free trade agreements — still plans to vote against it when it reaches the Senate.

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Sanders and Warren clash on North America trade deal

Photo: Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren took opposite positions on President Trump's North American trade deal, with Warren saying she would vote for it whereas Sanders said he would not.

What they're saying: Sanders has consistently criticized the trade agreement, known as USMCA, because it does not address climate change on any level. Warren argues starting with this trade deal is a modest improvement worth exploring.

Go deeperArrowJan 15, 2020

Senate passes USMCA trade deal

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

The Senate voted 89-10 Thursday to pass the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), designed to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Why it matters: The deal now heads to President Trump's desk for his signature, allowing the president to accomplish one of his biggest policy goals ahead of his 2020 re-election battle — hours before the official start of his impeachment trial

Go deeperArrowUpdated Jan 16, 2020

4 takeaways from the 7th Democratic debate

Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Six candidates squared off at Tuesday night's Democratic debate, which took place in Iowa but began with a global policy discussion on war and America's record in the Middle East.

The big picture: Recent tensions with Iran offered candidates the opportunity to draw sharp contrasts between their stances on foreign intervention. On more personal issues, like the rift between Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, the candidates were more subdued, emphasizing the importance of solidarity against President Trump with just three weeks until the Iowa caucuses.

Go deeperArrowJan 15, 2020