Catherine Holt, chief executive officer of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce, hopes Tuesday’s mid-term election will improve trade and travel relations between the Canada and the United States. File photo

U.S. election outcome positive for environment, trade and travel: UVic professor

Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce CEO hopes for a different rhetoric around trade

A local historian on the United States, who is familiar with the Pacific Northwest and its issues, says trade and travel between Canada and the U.S. will likely not change very much following Congressional elections in the United States.

Dr. Jason Colby, associate professor of history at the University of Victoria (UVic), said U.S. President Donald Trump will now find himself on the defensive after the Democratic Party won the House of Representatives, with the Senate remaining in control of the Republican Party following midterm elections in the United States Tuesday.

While Trump had been confrontational towards Canada on trade, he may have to change his approach. But Colby also added that Trump has proven himself to be unpredictable.

“He can still throw a wrench into the trade and travel between Canada and the United States,” he said.

RELATED: UVic law students battle travel ban

RELATED: Greater Victoria School District rethinks U.S. travel plans

RELATED: Out with NAFTA, in with USMCA: Canada inks new trade deal

Tuesday’s victory gives House Democrats the power to not only investigate Trump, but also various departments and agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which stands accused of obscuring and obstructing scientific findings and research on a range of issues.

Democrats, including House representatives from Washington State, could now use their power, to push for greater accountability, leading to potential improvements on environmental files that affect both British Columbia and Washington State, including climate change and the eventual fate of southern resident killer whales.

“That’s probably positive,” he said.

However, the Democrats may also choose to pursue other priorities.

Catherine Holt, chief executive officer of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce, said a good relationship with the United States is of “fundamental importance” to the local economy.

“The outcome of the midterm elections may lead to some reining in of recent damaging rhetoric about Canada,” she said. “The US is a major source of visitors for our tourism economy and the better Americans feel about us the more they will come. We also hope the change in power dynamics will be a positive factor in our trade relationship. The more stable and mutually beneficial our relationship with the U.S., the better it is for us as they are our country’s largest trading partner.”

Tuesday’s outcome in favour of the Democrats was not as overwhelming as anticipated, said Colby, who called the outcome a “standard victory” halfway through the term of an unpopular president.

It certainly did not match previous ‘wave’ elections like those in 1994 and 2010 when Republicans scored major victories, or 2006, when Democrats regained the House during the height of the Iraq War.

“But it’s still really significant,” he said.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Science fair draws best junior scientists from Vancouver Island to Victoria

200 young science enthusiasts share their inventions and discoveries at UVic

Vic. Symphony, Jeans ‘n Classics will rock you with the Best of Queen

Post-Bohemian Rhapsody, Pops Series concerts bring British band’s music back into spotlight

LOCAL FLAVOUR: Farm Whisperer tackles tough subject of farm succession

Linda Geggie is executive director with CR-FAIR

New Coast Guard ship crashes into Ogden Point breakwater

‘It is fairly unprecedented that it would happen’

Young cyclist struck near Galloping Goose Trail

Minor injuries reported by police

VIDEO: Keeping the hope alive, 28 years later

Annual Michael Dunahee Keep the Hope Alive run raised money for Child Find B.C.

Bobrovsky perfect as Blue Jackets blank Canucks 5-0

Vancouver shut out for 10th time this season

Fundraising campaign launched for man caught in SilverStar avalanche

In only two days, the GoFundMe surpassed its $15,000 goal

Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps says future assembly deliberations won’t be closed to public

Reversal comes after Saanich Coun. Judy Brownoff raised concerns

Terror at sea: Helicopter rescues frightened cruise passengers in Norway

The Viking Sky cruise ship was carrying 1,300 passengers and crew when it experienced engine trouble

Search and rescue team helicopters injured climber from B.C. provincial park

A 30-year-old woman suffered a suspected lower-limb fracture in Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park

DOJ: Trump campaign did not co-ordinate with Russia in 2016

Attorney General William Barr said special counsel “does not exonerate” Trump of obstructing justice

Most Read