Evidence points to elections having an anti-free trade effect on politicians. Term length and the electoral calendar play a key role in determining the outcome of votes on trade policy
Working class Americans have been unable to compete for jobs demanding specialized technical skills, while the places they live have been hollowed out by shifts in global supply chains and the death of low-skilled manufacturing. So long as these workers feel left out of the economic mainstream, they will remain a potent political force, including in the upcoming 2020 election.
Most Americans feel uncertain about the benefits of trade and trade policies for our own communities. In national polls, the higher the level of uncertainty, the increased likelihood individuals will check the “I don’t know” box.
New public opinion research shows that the majority of Americans worry the tariffs will do more harm than good for the economy.