On November 3, 2020, American voters will vote for their next President of the United States, and the three candidates who are expected to be on the ballot in all 50 states are Joe Biden, Jo Jorgensen, and Donald Trump. One issue Americans will need to consider is regarding jobs, the economy, and trade. Some Americans are for free trade while others prefer a protectionist stance.
Yesterday, June 9, 2020, Joe Biden announced his Plan to Buy American which sounds very similar to Donald Trump’s Executive Order to “Buy American.” In going through their plans, they are very similar, so Biden would only tweak Trump’s existing Executive Order. Both plans are protectionist in nature. Jorgensen’s approach is original in that she is the only candidate for free voluntary trade.
Some voters may favor one or the other approach, or perhaps a combination of the two ideologies. American protectionism can come in many forms; most commonly through tariffs, product standards, promoting the hiring of only Americans, quotas of various types, currency manipulation, and subsidies for products made or grown in America. While protectionism can have some short-term gains in employment and an increase in tax revenues, its ultimate effect is higher prices Americans will pay, trade war erupt with other counties, and limits the spectrum of products available to the public.
American free trade means that trade with others is unrestricted, either through tariffs or quotes. Free trade has many positives in the form of lower prices, wider availability of products, and eliminates other barriers of commerce for both business and individuals. It would also lower the amount of taxes and decreases the size of government, leaving winners up to the public rather than the government.
Free trade is the clear winner around the globe; however, much of this is managed trade and not true free trade. Perhaps a combined free trade option along with intellectual property protection forth by one candidate.