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Trump says Canada, Mexico behind trade deal, up to U.S. to get it passed

Trump says Canada, Mexico behind trade deal, up to U.S. to get it passed
FILE PHOTO: The flags of Canada, Mexico and the U.S. on a lectern before a joint news conference on the closing of the seventh round of NAFTA talks in Mexico City, Mexico March 5, 2018. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido -
Edgard Garrido(Reuters)
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WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump said on Thursday that Canada and Mexico are completely in line on the new North American trade deal and it is up to the United States to get it passed.

Speaking to reporters at the White House, Trump said he hoped Congress would quickly move to act on the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade deal, or USMCA. Canada said on Thursday that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau plans to meet with Trump on June 20 in Washington to discuss ratification of the accord.

“Hopefully they can act quickly because we could have that done very, very fast if we can get support from, really, the Democrats in Congress, (House Speaker) Nancy Pelosi, they have to put the bill forward,” Trump said.

The Trump administration has been pushing Congress to speed up a vote on the agreement. But the Democratic-led House of Representatives has sought more time to review the deal, with Pelosi pressing for improved enforcement mechanisms for labour and environmental standards.

Republicans, who control the U.S. Senate, have been seeking a vote on the USMCA before the August recess to avoid budget debates and 2020 presidential campaign activity expected to intensify in the autumn.

But Pelosi controls the schedule for trade legislation in the House and USMCA does not appear likely to come to a vote in that chamber during the summer.

“I think that hopefully it’s going to get approved quickly,” Trump told a roundtable with state governors. “Everybody wants it. It’s in Congress right now. It’s in the House and they’re reviewing it. But everybody seems to want it.”

“As you know Canada is totally in line and Mexico is totally in line and now it’s up to us to get it passed. And it’s going to have a tremendous impact, I think,” he added, noting it would mean “a lot of money and a lot of jobs.”

(Reporting by Roberta Rampton; Writing by David Alexander; Editing by Dan Grebler and David Gregorio)

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