FederalIssuesTradePresident Trump, in Austin, Speaks to Farm Bureau on USMCA, China, and 2020 Election

President Trump visited Austin on Sunday to tout recent progress on trade deals before the American Farm Bureau Federation's annual gathering.
January 20, 2020
President Donald Trump gave the keynote speech at the American Farm Bureau Federation’s annual convention Sunday in Austin. With American agriculture stakeholders, farmers, and Texas politicians alike in attendance, the president touted recent progress on trade policy.

“Farmers have always been the keepers of our great American values,” Trump stated.

The Senate’s passage of the USMCA and the Trump administration’s signing of a “Phase One” trade deal with China each happened last week. The USMCA awaits the President’s signature and discussions for further agreements with China, according to the administration, are ongoing.

Talking NAFTA and its replacement, USMCA, Trump lamented the outsourcing of manufacturing jobs he attributes to NAFTA and claims that because of the USMCA, “Everyone wants to come back to America.”

Regarding China, Trump thanked the farmers for their resiliency during the tariff dispute. “[Texas] is a place where people are known for being tough, strong, hard-working, loyal, and fiercely patriotic — just like America’s incredible farmers,” Trump stated.

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As of September, at least $630 million of the $28 billion bailout funding — designed to aid U.S. farmers hurt by the trade dispute with China — went to Texas farmers.

He continued, “We signed a groundbreaking agreement with China. Under this landmark agreement, China will be buying $40 to $50 billion of American agriculture products every single year.” The $40 to $50 billion increase in imports by China will occur over the span of two years, not one.

Notably, China effectively shut off its imports of U.S. agricultural products last summer, closing one of the largest export markets for U.S. farmers.

“My administration has been fighting for the American farmer, and it’s been fighting for the farmer and the rancher every single day — we’ve achieved something really stunning,” he added.

Trump specifically thanked numerous Texas elected officials including Lt. Governor Dan Patrick; Attorney General Ken Paxton; Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller; and Congressmen Randy Weber (R-TX-14), Roger Williams (R-TX-25), and John Carter (R-TX-31).

Touting his support from farmers, Trump cited a poll from the Farm Journal which stated his approval rating among farmers is 83 percent — the highest in his tenure.

Trump also affirmed his confidence that Texas will remain a red state this November.

“Most presidents don’t come [to speak at the Farm Bureau convention], and if they do it’s only once, but this is my third time and I promise you I’ll be here next year, too,” Trump emphasized, to rousing applause and cheers from the crowd.


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Brad Johnson

Brad Johnson is a senior reporter for The Texan and an Ohio native who graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 2017. He is an avid sports fan who most enjoys watching his favorite teams continue their title drought throughout his cognizant lifetime. In his free time, you may find Brad quoting Monty Python productions and trying to calculate the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow.