President Clinton signs NAFTA

Ohio’s Democratic U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown plans to meet with President Trump’s trade representative tomorrow to talk about the starting points for the U.S. renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement.

NAFTA flag

Renegotiating NAFTA was a big selling point for Donald Trump with Ohio voters, and likely represents his best chance of getting Ohio Democratic support in Congress. 

The Trump administration has officially notified Congress that it plans to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement but is being vague about what changes will be negotiated. The notice came from Robert Lighthizer, the U.S. trade represenative and Ashtabula native.

photo of Sonny Perdue

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue is announcing a new position in his department.

At an event in Cincinnati today, Perdue said he’s creating an undersecretary for trade to focus on marketing American agriculture products around the world.

“The goal is after you have enough food to produce and feed your family, you want to share, you want sell it, you want to move it and trade it across the world," Perdue said.

photo of Ohio farmers

One in seven Ohioans is connected to the state’s largest industry: agriculture. And they're among the voters trying to sort through the trade, business and environmental positions of the presidential candidates.

An 80-acre patch of land in western Ohio becomes a farmers’ fair every September, with 140,000 visitors coming to the Farm Science Review near London. They wander through rows and rows of vendor booths and tents in the summer heat, seeing and hearing about the latest in farming equipment, technology, products, services and educational programs.

Rob Portman and Ted Strickland

Trade is one issue that leaves Republican U.S. Sen. Rob Portman and his Democratic challenger, former Gov. Ted Strickland, trading blows with one another. 

Trade has been a top issue in the ads and debates in Ohio's U.S. Senate race. And it’s somewhat ironic that Portman’s view on trade is closer to that of Democratic Presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, and Strickland’s is more like Republican nominee Donald Trump.