What’s on Tap for Trade in 2019


At noon today, the 116th Congress convened. Over at Fox Business, Iain Murray and I look at what the coming year has in store for the new Congress on trade. The two biggest items are the NAFTA/USMCA vote, which isn’t a big deal, and China, which is:

For Congress, the most important 2019 trade priority is reclaiming the tariff-making authority it delegated away in the 1960s and 1970s. Under the Constitution, only Congress has taxing power. Tariff delegation has long since served its purpose, and should have come back to Congress long ago.

The trade damage done in 2018 will take years to undo. The new NAFTA doesn’t matter much either way, but abandoning a failed tariff strategy is crucial.

The executive branch should rejoin the Trans-Pacific Partnership and engage the World Trade Organization’s dispute resolution process to encourage reform in China. But Congress has plenty to do, too. The time to start is now.

Read the whole thing here.