Free trade has been essential to the international nameplate automobile industry for decades. During economic downturns, a pivot to protectionist trade legislation is seen in politics as an easy remedy. With a closely divided House and Senate, the 2022 election cycle will be critical. In the Senate, there is a 50-50 split, while in the House, Democrats have a 6-seat majority. Every House and Senate seat will be important in establishing free trade majorities.
Recent trade votes on the United States-Mexico-Canada (USMCA) trade agreement have altered the contours of automotive trade in North America. This demonstrates why electing free trade members of Congress is crucial to the auto industry. As future trade agreements impacting automotive trade are negotiated and considered, it is important for those on Capitol Hill to understand the impact these agreements will have on the international auto industry.