Despite the fact that free trade has provided overwhelming benefits for the vast majority of American families, workers and businesses, the longstanding consensus in favor of trade has frayed. For the first time in generations, both major party presidential nominees were openly skeptical of trade (one outright hostile), and both Republicans and Democrats in Congress openly campaigned against Trans-Pacific Partnership. Such rhetoric has real harms: not only does anti-trade sentiment among our political class influence public opinion and undermine future trade liberalization efforts, but it also has real and immediate effects on global trade and investment decisions. In a time when our stagnant economy could use a trade-provided boost, such proposals are nowhere to be found. Until free trade proponents adopt a new approach - one that actively embraces both the economic and moral superiority of free trade - the protectionists will keep winning, thus ensuring less freedom and a lower standard of living for us all.
Scott Lincicome, J.D. is an international trade attorney with extensive experience in trade litigation before national agencies and courts, as well as the World Trade Organization's Dispute Settlement Body. He also advises corporate and sovereign clients on bilateral and multilateral (WTO) trade agreement negotiations, as well as US trade politics and policy. Scott is an Adjunct Scholar with the Cato Institute, where he writes on international economic policy and politics. He also is a Senior Visiting Lecturer at Duke University Law School and a Visiting Lecturer at Duke University, where he teaches courses on international trade law and international trade policy, respectively. Since 2007, Scott has advised members of Congress, as well as presidential and congressional campaigns, on international trade and economic issues. From 1998 – 2001, he worked as a research assistant with the Cato Institute’s Center for Trade Policy Studies in Washington, focusing on US international trade law and policy. Scott has a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Virginia and a J.D. from the University's School of Law.
Scott is a Senior Contributor to The Federalist and routinely appears or is quoted in the media. He is the co-author of the 2009 Cato Institute study, Audaciously Hopeful: How President Obama Can Help Restore the Free Trade Consensus, the 2010 Heritage Foundation WebMemo, Brazilian Retaliation Against U.S. Trade Violations: A Signal for Reform, and the 2011 Cato Institute paper, Beyond Exports: A Better Case for Free Trade. He also is the author of the October 2012 Cato Institute paper Countervailing Calamity: How to Stop the Global Subsidies Race, the February 2013 Cato paper License to Drill: The Case for Modernizing America’s Crude Oil and Natural Gas Export Licensing Systems, and Trade Chapter of the June 2016 Heritage Foundation report Agriculture Unleashed: A Free Market Alternative to the Farm Bill.