How Protectionist Rhetoric Endangers America

Container ship Ever Given. Wikimedia Commons/NOAA’s National Ocean Service

Ignore the politicians—free trade is in the U.S. national interest.

Issue: July-August 2016

THE NEED to fight protectionism may well stand as one of America’s clearest and most vital national interests. From the voting booth to the country’s foreign-policy establishment, action is needed to defend free trade and shift away from past, unnecessarily partisan trade policies. Protectionism has destroyed prosperity time and again. The most dramatic illustration emerges from the history of the Smoot-Hawley tariffs of the 1930s. Sen. Reed Smoot and Rep.

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