Driving American Jobs Coalition Relaunched to Oppose Auto Tariffs; NAFTA Talks Forge On With Clock Ticking

You Auto Know 09/14/18

Driving American Jobs Coalition Relaunched to Oppose Auto Tariffs; 

NAFTA Talks Forge On With Clock Ticking

Formed last year to tout NAFTA as a success for the entire U.S. auto industry, the Driving American Jobs coalition has recently been repackaged and relaunched to oppose auto tariffs that may result from the Department of Commerce's ongoing Section 232 national security investigation.  In addition to AIADA, the newly expanded group is comprised of manufacturers, parts suppliers, parts distributors, retailers and vehicle service providers. The group is undertaking a public affairs and lobbying effort to educate decision-makers about the consequences of imposing a 25% tariff on imported autos and parts.

High level NAFTA talks continued this week with Canadian and Mexican negotiators in Washington for meetings with the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR).  The U.S. and Canada are working to hammer out remaining issues in hopes that they can reach a deal on an updated NAFTA quickly in order to meet an aggressive timeline set forth by Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), also known as "fast track."  TPA requires that the complete text of the agreement be submitted to Congress by the end of September.

Political pressures from the U.S. midterm elections and a changeover in the Mexican administration are also making the signing of a new deal no later than November 30 a pressing concern for both countries.  Canada, though, appears less concerned with the calendar deadlines set by the U.S., insisting it's in no rush and intends to focus on getting the right agreement as opposed to a quick agreement.  President Trump has threatened to hit auto imports from Canada with a hefty auto tariff if they are unable to reach a deal.

Quotes of the Week

"All of the evidence supports that a zero-tariff policy under NAFTA has helped raise family income in Tennessee.  And that policy would be good to apply to our relationships with other countries in the world, particularly our allies like Europe and Japan and South Korea."

            -Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN) (USA Today)

"When America does trade the wrong way, with unnecessary and self-defeating restrictions, we raise costs and prices, depress demand, limit consumer choice, discourage new investment, and threaten jobs and opportunity."

            -John Bozzella, President & CEO of the Association of Global Automakers (Oral Testimony before Senate Committee on Health Education Labor & Pensions)

"Free trade must always be an active instrument of American leadership."

            -Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) (www.speaker.gov)

This Week in Policy News

Trump Plans to Rebrand NAFTA, Warns Canada (Wall Street Journal)

Canada PM Says He Wants a Good NAFTA Deal Soon, Hazy on Deadline (Reuters)

Mexico Goes to U.S. to Advance NAFTA Deal With or Without Canada (Bloomberg)

US, Canada Will Meet Tuesday, Earlier Than Expected on NAFTA (The Hill)

Car Dealers Fret Over Possible Tariffs, Survey Shows (Wards Auto)

Congress Resists Reining in Trump on Trade (Automotive News)

This Week in Auto News

Car Owners Say These Brands Have the Fewest Tech Headaches (Detroit Free Press)

Carolina Dealers Brace for Hurricane Florence, Close Early (Automotive News)

U.S. Auto Sales Face Tough Slog to the Finish Line (Automotive News)

Must Watch

Watch Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) explain his thoughts on the importance of free trade.

Friday Funny

Police Dog Donated By Dealership Helps Catch Alleged Car Thief

A Florida Toyota dealership's decision to fund a K-9 for the local police department turned out to be a worthwhile investment.

That dog, Tundra, helped make the arrest of a man who allegedly stole a car from the dealership while being shown the car's feature by a sales representative.

After the suspect took off with the vehicle, police tracked him down and unleashed the K9 when he refused to exit the vehicle.  The suspect was ultimately transported to the hospital to be treated for bite injuries.

The dealer later quipped to local media, "you don't usually get a return on investment with charitable donations."