What Happened: Members of the Democratic Party in the U.S. House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee have expressed skepticism that the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) will significantly improve labor standards in Mexico, according to an April 11 letter to U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, Inside U.S. Trade reported.
Why It Matters: The Ways and Means Committee's letter could pose a serious challenge to the USMCA's ratification as the agreement requires the panel's approval. The Democrat-led House of Representatives could also use the issue of USMCA approval as political leverage against the Trump administration to extract concessions on other issues.
Background: The Ways and Means Committee must approve the USCMA prior to a vote of the full House of Representatives. The United States, Mexico and Canada agreed to domestic reforms during negotiations to improve the enforcement of labor protections in Mexico as part of the overall deal.
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