trade

The U.S. has reached two major trade agreements with international partners in the past month, with the Trump administration pitching these deals as a way to ease the burden farmers have shouldered during the trade war with China.

Updated at 9 a.m. ET

"America loves India, America respects India, and America will always be faithful and loyal friends to the Indian people," President Trump told a cheering crowd of more than 100,000 people in India's huge Motera cricket stadium on Monday.

"From this day on, India will always hold a very special place in our hearts," Trump said. He referred to his host, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, as "a man I am proud to call my true friend."

As the second week of the Senate impeachment trial begins, President Trump is making sure not to fully cede the spotlight to Democrats' effort to oust him.

Trump is set to meet Monday with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and then Netanyahu's political rival, Benny Gantz, as the administration plans to release its plan for Middle East peace.

U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio) says the new trade deal with China will level the playing field with the U.S., but he urges trade negotiators to be firm as they work on Phase Two.

Ryan Rhoades is president of the Ohio Soybean Association. Although the ag benchmarks set out in the deal are high, he doesn't think american farmers will have a problem producing enough supply.
Nick Evans / WOSU

This week, President Donald Trump signed Phase One of a new trade agreement with China. The move represents a kind of truce between the world’s two largest economies after two years of escalating tariffs.

Updated at 7:28 p.m. ET

The Senate overwhelmingly approved a revised North American trade pact in a rare bipartisan vote Thursday that hands President Trump a victory on a key campaign promise 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.

A new initial trade agreement between the United States and China signed Wednesday brings protections for intellectual property and eased regulations for U.S. exports. China is also setting an ambitious target of purchasing $200 billion in U.S. goods by 2021.

The agreement is bringing relief to Ohio’s soybean farmers, who rely on China to sell roughly one-third of their product.

Updated at 2:07 p.m. ET

A year and a half after launching his trade war against China, President Trump signed a partial truce on Wednesday.

"We mark more than just an agreement. We mark a sea change in international trade," Trump said during a White House signing ceremony. "At long last, Americans have a government that puts them first."

In 2019, the federal government delivered an extraordinary financial aid package to America's farmers. Farm subsidies jumped to their highest level in 14 years, most of them paid out without any action by Congress.

The money flowed to farmers like Robert Henry. When I visited in early July, many of his fields near New Madrid, Mo., had been flooded for months, preventing him from working in them. The soybeans that he did manage to grow had fallen in value; China wasn't buying them, in retaliation for the Trump administration's tariffs.

Gov. Mike DeWine talks to farmer Kris Swartz in Perrysburg on June 19, 2019.
Nick Evans / WOSU

It looks like 2019 could be the first year in a decade where Ohio loses jobs. Will 2020 provide better job prospects in the state?

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, speaks at a Culinary Union hall Saturday, Feb. 23, 2019, in Las Vegas.
John Locher / Associated Press

After months of negotiation, Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) on Friday announced his support for the new North American trade deal, also known as the U.S. Mexico Canada Trade Agreement (USMCA). It’s the first time Brown has publicly thrown his support behind a trade deal.

Cows congregate at Waterman Farms in Columbus.
/ WOSU

In this week's episode of Snollygoster, Ohio's politics podcast from WOSU, hosts Mike Thompson and Steve Brown discuss the bipartisan support for a new North American trade deal. Case Western Reserve University law professor Juscelino Colares joins the show.

Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio)
John Minchillo / Associated Press

Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) says progress is being made in Washington D.C. even as two articles of impeachment are being brought against President Trump.

Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, left, and Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, speak to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018.
J. Scott Applewhite / AP

Sen. Sherrod Brown says he needs to take a closer look at the new U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement before making a decision.

For Dan Younggren, who grows sugar beets in the northwest corner of Minnesota, 2019 was a year of plagues.

First came the water. "Ten inches, up to almost 20 inches of rain," Younggren says. The fields in his region were so wet that farmers couldn't work in them.

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