DAYTON, OH —Today, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) convened roundtable discussions with Ohio stakeholders in Toledo, Lima and Dayton to discuss NAFTA and ways to improve trade deals for Ohio. Brown has regularly spoken with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer throughout the NAFTA renegotiations, and he met with manufacturers, businesses, workers, and community leaders today to take their ideas back to Washington as negotiations on NAFTA continue.

“Time after time, we’ve seen corporate lobbyists writing trade deals behind closed doors, while American workers are locked out,” said Brown. “That’s how we end up with trade agreement after trade agreement that sells out workers. American jobs shouldn’t be up for negotiation, and American workers can’t be traded away as bargaining chips.”

This week, NAFTA talks continued with trade representatives meeting in Montreal. Brown continues discussions with U.S. Trade Rep. Lighthizer and offered the Administration a four-point plan for renegotiating NAFTA to get the best deal for Ohio.

Brown’s Four Point Plan for Renegotiating NAFTA includes:

  1. Secure Anti-Outsourcing and Buy America Provisions Up Front
  1. Don’t Pit American Workers and Industries against Each Other in Negotiations 
  1. Build Enforcement Tools that Favor American Workers, Not Foreign Corporations if the Deal is Violated
  1. Include Workers in the Negotiations

Immediately after President Trump’s election, Brown reached out to his transition team to offer his help on retooling U.S. trade policy. Brown wrote to Trump in November offering specific steps to work together on trade and Trump responded with a handwritten note. Since then, Brown has spoken with the President about Buy American and had multiple conversations with top White House trade advisers, including U.S. Trade Rep Lighthizer. 

At Brown’s urging, the Administration recently took action against illegal washing machine imports that were threatening Ohio jobs.  

As a long-time advocate for fair trade, Brown has stood up to presidents of both parties on shortsighted trade agreements that ship U.S. jobs overseas. He led the bipartisan opposition to NAFTA in 1993 – as a freshman in the U.S. House of Representatives – and to CAFTA in 2005. Brown is working on trade policies that promote our workers, small businesses, and manufacturers while creating jobs and expanding markets through an aggressive export promotion strategy.