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Politics & Polls #33: Trade in a Trumpian World

March 7th, 2017, 2:28am by Sam Wang

Julian Zelizer and I Sam Wang interviewed Michael Froman. Ambassador Froman served in President Obama‚Äôs cabinet as the U.S. Trade Representative from June 2013 to January 2017. We had a vivid discussion about what trade agreements do – and don’t – accomplish. In what was probably my favorite moment in the interview, he held up his smartphone (you can’t see it of course) and said that without free trade, the phone would cost $2,500.

Such a vivid argument was missing during the 2016 Presidential campaign. But you get to hear it on Politics and Polls!


Tags: President

4 Comments so far ↓

  • LondonYoung

    I would be interested to hear what the assumptions behind that $2500 figure are. It sounds high, but I also gather that Foxconn’s laborers are very poorly treated in China.

    • 538 Refugee

      I could make some guesses but a follow up by your guest with a paragraph or two would be interesting if he would be kind enough to answer that question. There are some rare materials that are VERY scarce if you also include protecting domestic suppliers in this mix. They could make the cost of printer ink seem reasonable if you limited their competition.

    • Sam Wang

      Well, he was the U.S. Trade Representative. I am inclined to accept his word on the topic.

  • 538 Refugee

    Excellent guest. I’m glad to hear talk of leveling the playing field about raising living and environmental standards elsewhere.

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