The US-Mexico-Canada Trade Deal

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A new survey of Midwest bankers suggests they're optimistic about the economy over the next few months.  That’s thanks to the signings of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement and the China trade agreement.

The latest Rural Mainstreet Survey showed the overall index for February declined to 51.6 from 55.9 in January.  Any score above 50 suggests a growing economy, while a score below 50 indicates a shrinking economy.

The U.S. Senate ratified the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement today, cementing a major new trade deal that’s been years in the making.

Iowa Senator Joni Ernst says this is a vital pact with our neighbors to the north and south and promises a tremendous boost for the Iowa economy. Iowa is the nation’s number-one pork producer, and in 2018, Canada and Mexico bought more than 40-percent of all U.S. pork exports. Iowa is also the country’s number-one egg producer and the USMCA will raise U.S. exports of poultry and eggs to Canada alone by $207 million dollars.

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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.

Associated Press

Today, Democrats unveiled articles of impeachment charging President Trump with abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

About an hour later, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced an agreement on a North American trade pact, giving a major win to the president amid impeachment.

U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa took to Twitter to talk about the trade deal with Mexico and Canada.

However, Grassley Iowa counterpart Joni Ernst took to Twitter this morning to talk about another issue regarding the Trump Administration:

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House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy predicted today that Congress will pass the North American Free Trade Agreement replacement by the end of the year, despite Democrats’ focus on impeaching President Donald Trump. Iowa Republican US Senator Charles Grassley says he hopes the deal with go through by the end of the year.

On this week's program, we will hear from the author of a new book that tells the wide-ranging history of the Lakota people, who have lived in Missouri River Valley for hundreds of years.

Also, we have an interview with presidential candidate and South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg. Buttigieg spoke with the hosts of the podcast We Are Not A Monolith Ike Rayford and Shelby Pierce at the Siouxland Public Media studios last week.

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Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley is asking House Democrats to “act quickly” to ratify the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement before the week is out.  Yesterday Grassley told the Senate the agreement would create hundreds of thousands of jobs and help raise wages for Americans.  Grassley says if a deal cannot be reached by the end of this week, he doesn’t see how the USMCA can be ratified this year.

Governor Kim Reynolds says she’s disappointed that a federal judge temporarily blocked a new law critics call “ag-gag two-point-oh”.

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Governor Kim Reynolds is no longer allowing the public to attend her annual budget request meetings with state agency directors.

The hearings had allowed state agency directors to publicly describe the needs of their agencies, and the governor could ask them questions. 

But Reynolds says she finds the private meetings very productive.

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It is election day across Iowa. Voters are electing local and school board candidates.  Six candidates are competing for four seats on the Sioux City Community School board There are also school board races in the Lawton-Bronson and Sgt. Bluff Luton districts.