Trade ? and, in particular, trade with Canada, Mexico and China ? dominated discussion at a town hall meeting Tuesday in Iola with Congressman Steve Watkins, a Republican who represents Kansas? 2nd District.
Watkins touted his appointments to three committees ? education and labor, veterans affairs and foreign affairs ? and co-sponsorship of 177 pieces of legislation, ?more than any other Republican freshman in Congress,? he said.
He also serves as the only Republican freshman working on a new trade agreement between the U.S. and Mexico and Canada, commonly known as NAFTA 2.0. The deal would replace NAFTA with new rules to automakers, stricter labor and environmental standards, intellectual property protections and digital trade provisions. President Donald Trump, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and then-Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto signed the deal in November, but it must be ratified by participating governments. Only Mexico so far has done so.