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Senate Passes US-Mexica-Canada Trade Deal

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011620 304 

The Senate has overwhelmingly approved a revised North American trade pact in a rare bipartisan vote today that hands President Trump a victory on a key campaign promise. It has happened just as lawmakers are preparing his impeachment trial.

The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA, passed by a vote of 89-10. The trade pact, signed by the president in November 2018, received a similar bipartisan vote in the House last month.

The USMCA is meant to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement, negotiated in the 1990s.

U.S. Senator Joni Ernst of Iowa said of the deal that “Iowans in every corner of our state have been waiting far too long for Congress to act on the USMCA and now, after months of delay, House Democrats are finally coming on board.” 

The leader of the Iowa National Guard says low unemployment and competition from other military branches are making it difficult to attract new soldiers.

In a speech before the governor and state lawmakers, Adjutant General Benjamin Corell said he will work on keeping pay and education benefits competitive. He also wants to increase racial diversity among the Guard’s leadership to help improve recruiting in minority communities.

We have to demonstrate to our diverse communities that they are represented in leadership positions within the National Guard. This will be a long process with deliberate management efforts to grow the future leaders who are reflective of the changing demographics of our state.

Corell says the Guard also plans to upgrade its facilities across the state. He says that means some centers are likely to be closed if the buildings are obsolete or they no longer support a sustainable number of service members.