While the Senate Finance Committee easily approved the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) this week, the timing for a final ratification vote on the Senate floor remains unclear.
The Senate committee approved the House-passed USMCA implementing legislation (H.R. 5430) by a 25-3 vote. Senate aides have said a full Senate vote on the accord likely will be delayed until after next week, since the legislation was referred to six other committees for review.
“I look forward to a vote on the Senate floor, hopefully soon on final passage,” Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said after his committee’s vote. He noted that the impending presidential impeachment trial is muddying the waters for legislative timing. “Impeachment remains a wild card with scheduling the full Senate vote on USMCA,” Grassley said.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has not sent the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump to the Senate yet. The House voted in December for two articles of impeachment to remove the president from office — abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. Once the case goes to the Senate for trial, it will take precedence over any legislative matters, including USMCA.