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Senate passes US-Mexico-Canada trade deal, delivering policy victory to President Trump

WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 15: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks before he and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He, before signed phase 1 of a trade deal between the U.S. and China, in the East Room at the White House, on January 15, 2020 in Washington, DC. Phase 1 is expected to cut tariffs and promote Chinese purchases of U.S. farm, and manufactured goods while addressing disputes over intellectual property. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON — The Senate overwhelmingly approved a new North American trade agreement Thursday that rewrites the rules of trade with Canada and Mexico and gives President Donald Trump a major policy win before senators turn their full attention to his impeachment trial.

The vote was 89-10.

The measure goes to President Trump for his signature. It would replace the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement, which tore down most trade barriers and triggered a surge in trade. But President Trump and other critics blamed that pact for encouraging U.S. companies to move their manufacturing plants south of the border to take advantage of low-wage Mexican laborers.

Passage of the trade bill came one day after President Trump signed a new trade agreement with China, easing trade tensions between the economic powers.

“Quite a week of substantive accomplishments for the nation, for the president and for our international trade,” said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., shortly before the vote on the U.S.-Mexico-Canada deal.

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