WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) joined 25 of her colleagues in sending a letter to President Trump supporting his recent comments about re-engaging in Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade negotiations.

The senators wrote, “Reducing barriers to trade and investment, protecting American intellectual property rights, and leveling the playing field for U.S. businesses, manufacturers, farmers, fishermen, and ranchers is of utmost importance, and we ask that you prioritize engagement with the TPP so that the American people can prosper from the tremendous opportunities that these trading partners bring.” 

They continued, emphasizing that an “improved TPP would therefore bolster and sustain the economic growth America has experienced over the past year facilitated by the regulatory reductions and reforms enacted by your Administration and the substantial tax cuts that you signed into law.”

The letter was sent prior to President Trump’s scheduled meeting with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull at the White House later this week. The two leaders are expected to discuss trade and ways to promote economic growth for both nations.

Ernst joined Senators Steve Daines (R-MT), Orrin G. Hatch (R-UT), Pat Roberts (R-KS), John Cornyn (R-TX), Mike Rounds (R-SD), James Lankford (R-OK), Roy Blunt (R-MO), Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), James Risch (R-ID), John Barrasso (R-WY), Cory Gardner (R-CO), Mike Enzi (R-WY), Ben Sasse (R-NE), Jerry Moran (R-KS), Ron Johnson (R-WI), Dan Sullivan (R-AK), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Todd Young (R-IN), Roger Wicker (R-MS), John McCain (R-AZ), and Richard Burr (R-NC).

The full text of the senators’ letter to President Trump can be found here and below.

Mr. President:

We write in support of your recent comments expressing interest in re-engaging with the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to bring about a stronger agreement for the United States. Reducing barriers to trade and investment, protecting American intellectual property rights, and leveling the playing field for U.S. businesses, manufacturers, farmers, fishermen, and ranchers is of utmost importance, and we ask that you prioritize engagement with the TPP so that the American people can prosper from the tremendous opportunities that these trading partners bring. 

As you know, increased economic engagement with the eleven nations currently in the TPP has the potential to substantially improve the competitiveness of U.S. businesses, support millions of U.S. jobs, increase U.S. exports, increase wages, fully unleash America’s energy potential, and benefit consumers. Increasing access to a region and market that has a population of nearly 500 million can create widespread benefits to the U.S. economy. An improved TPP would therefore bolster and sustain the economic growth America has experienced over the past year facilitated by the regulatory reductions and reforms enacted by your Administration and the substantial tax cuts that you signed into law.

Further, TPP can serve as a way to strengthen ties with our allies in the region, counter the influence of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), and increase pressure on the PRC to adopt substantive and positive economic reforms. Re-engaging on TPP would also provide another platform to modernize trade with Canada and Mexico.

We recognize that such an endeavor requires the confirmation of your qualified nominees within the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, Department of Commerce, and other trade-related federal agencies. We are committed to securing their expeditious consideration on the Senate floor.

In summary, we encourage you to work aggressively to secure reforms that would allow the United States to join the agreement. We share your commitment for free trade agreements that benefit the American people, and we stand ready to work closely with you toward achieving a TPP agreement that meets this objective.