NAFTA Has Been Great For Our Economy — But Here’s Something We Can Improve

Since the passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) — a treaty envisioned by Ronald Reagan and later implemented by Bill Clinton — trade between the U.S., Canada, and Mexico has increased from $290 billion in 1993 to $1.1 trillion today. This skyrocketing increase in economic activity has blessed American workers with a de facto pay raise by virtue of lower prices resulting from increased productivity. Free trade is always a net-positive for our economy because it eliminates arbitrary barriers between nations, allowing for greater competition and specialization. This allows our paychecks to go further, while opening up

A Trump Trade War Would Be Sobering for American Whiskey

Over the last few weeks, President Trump has ignited a modern Whiskey Rebellion after revealing his interest in placing a tariff on foreign-made steel. In response to Trump’s protectionist threat, the European Union announced that (if Trump’s plan were enacted) they would respond with a series of tariffs of their own — including adding a new tax on American bourbon. To say the least, a trade war like this would not benefit the United States or Europe. While some in the Trump administration may hold out hope that the US steel industry would boom from such an arrangement, the reality

Trump’s Border Tax “Kingdom” Would Have Plenty of Serfs

In a recent New York Times interview, Donald Trump was pressed on whether he was a fan of the House GOP’s proposed border-adjustment tax; the President responded, “I am. I’m the king of that.” If President Trump has in fact changed his position on the border adjustment tax, we had better hope his tax plan achieves the same success as his health care bill. The House GOP’s border tax would be a disaster for American consumers and the global economy. In exchange for cuts to the corporate and personal income tax rates, Speaker Paul Ryan’s plan calls for a new

Tim Kaine Asks Voters to Trust Hillary — But Can They Trust Him?

Last night at the Democratic National Convention, Tim Kaine attempted to make the case that Hillary Clinton is honest and trustworthy, a sentiment with which the overwhelming majority of Americans disagree. Amid a number of attacks on Donald Trump, Kaine laid out his argument: First, she’s consistent. … When you want to know something about the character of somebody in public life, look to see if they have a passion that began long before they were in office, and that they have consistently held it throughout their career. Kaine’s attempt to paint Hillary Clinton as a consistent, principled politician is

First Draft of the GOP Platform: What You Need to Know

On Sunday evening, the Republican National Committee shared a 58-page first draft of the party’s 2016 platform with members of the convention’s platform committee, which will debate, add, or change provisions over the next week. For the most part, the RNC’s draft is similar to the 2012 platform. On Common Core and other education issues, the party’s stance is still strongly against federal meddling in local affairs, even if some Republican lawmakers are less committed to a principled stance on the issue. The platform also condemns the growth of the federal administrative state at the expense of local sovereignty. Even

Trump, Cruz Escalate Attacks as Indiana Vote Nears

Donald Trump and Ted Cruz are in the midst of making their final pitches to the people of Indiana before next Tuesday’s primary, spending millions of dollars on television advertising throughout the state. Trump has largely focused on trade deals and outsourcing, attacking local manufacturer Carrier Corp for its plans to move 2,100 jobs to Mexico. Cruz, meanwhile, has largely focused on Trump’s recent statements against North Carolina’s bathroom bill, and has repeatedly compared Trump’s policies to those of Hillary Clinton. A recent ad from the Trump campaign features Donald Trump Jr. praising his father’s tough persona, stating, “It’s that

“It’s The Economy, Stupid!” Time For CNBC To Grill Candidates On Monetary, Tax, Trade Policy

At last, we mere voters might get to watch a debate that will focus on the two top issues that virtually every poll places at the top of our concerns: jobs and the economy.  Earlier debates have only lightly brushed on these matters. This is a great pity. Time for CNBC to give us a gold standard presidential debate with questions that matter. As I wrote in my Forbes.com column “Here’s What’s Likely To Hurt the Republicans in 2016” last April: “It’s the economy, stupid!”  The weirdest thing about the onrushing 2016 presidential cycle is the scarcity of a GOP economic