Vox Sentences: House gives Senate the USMCA for Christmas

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It’s fun to vote on the U-S-M-C-A

  • With bipartisan support, the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement passed in the House on Thursday, replacing the North American Free Trade Agreement by a massive bipartisan margin. [Washington Post / Erica Werner]
  • The deal includes tougher requirements for manufacturing cars, trucks, and their parts in North America; gives the US access to the Canadian dairy market; extends copyright in Canada to 70 years after the author’s death, and will require Mexico to pass labor-friendly laws. [Vox / Jen Kirby]
  • USMCA represents a shift away from free trade to “managed trade” through clauses that restrict what Canada and Mexico, not just the US, are able to do. [LA Times / Don Lee]
  • Under the new agreement, cars will be eligible for tariffs unless 75 percent of their parts are made in North America — up from 62.5 percent under NAFTA — and that nearly half of the parts be made by workers making at least $16 per hour. [Washington Post / Heather Long]
  • Experts say that these requirements could help some auto workers in the US, but could also make cars more expensive. [Washington Post / Heather Long]
  • The bill is being praised as a win for Trump — but it’s partly because the deal was basically popular, and Democrats were able to remove some of the worst parts of the proposal, Vox’s Matt Yglesias writes. [Vox / Matt Yglesias]

Gen. Pervez Musharraf faces execution in Pakistan

  • Pakistan sentenced former military leader Gen. Pervez Musharraf to death for treason. [NPR / Bill Chappell and Diaa Hadid]
  • After coming to power through a coup in 1999, Musharraf subverted the constitution and declared a state of emergency in 2007, a special court ruled on Tuesday. [Al Jazeera]
  • The panel of judges handed down this ruling, justified by Article 6 of the Pakistani constitution that includes anyone who “abrogates or subverts or suspends or holds in abeyance” in the description of high treason. This verdict is unprecedented in that it challenges Pakistan’s military. [Brookings Institution / Madiha Afzal]
  • If Musharraf dies before his execution date, the judges ruled that “his corpse (should) be dragged to D-Chowk, Islamabad, Pakistan, and be hanged for three days.” The Pakistani government is fighting this ruling, looking to disbar the leader of the judges who handed down the decision. [Reuters / Asif Shahzad]
  • Musharraf currently resides in Delhi, India, and has the ability to challenge the ruling in the Supreme Court of Pakistan, so it is unlikely that the verdict will be carried out. [Financial Times / Farhan Bokhari]

Miscellaneous

  • Trump says he believes that Ukraine interfered in American elections because Russia told him so. [Slate / Elliot Hannon]
  • Last night’s debate featured an argument over a crystal-adorned wine cave. [Vox / Ella Nilsen]
  • Boeing’s Starliner won’t be able to reach the International Space Station after it flew in the wrong orbit. [CNBC / Michael Sheetz]
  • New Jersey’s new law makes it illegal to discriminate based on hairstyles, a year after a student was forced to cut his dreadlocks in order to wrestle. [CNN / Dakin Andone]
  • Qatar has a special hospital for their prized feathered friends. [New York Times / Tariq Panja]

Verbatim

“There’s a family feud under the water between what Trump and McConnell think is the best strategy.” [Dan Eberhart, a major Republican donor, on the upcoming Senate impeachment trial]


Watch this: Who pays the lowest taxes in the US?

Taxes are playing a big part of the Democratic presidential candidates’ campaigns. But who really pays the least taxes? [YouTube / Alvin Chang]


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