President-elect Donald Trump, at his Florida Mar-a-Lago estate, will meet with former Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, who worked in the Reagan administration.
Lighthizer, a partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, previously defended Trump’s rhetoric on trade. In a 2011 op-ed, for example, Lighthizer questioned the criticism from conservatives of Trump as a liberal because of his stance on trade, arguing that if Trump forces questions about free trade, “it will have done a service to both the Republican Party and the country.”
Skepticism toward pure free-trade dogma can be seen as well in more recent Republican leaders. The icon of modern conservatism, Ronald Reagan, imposed quotas on imported steel, protected Harley-Davidson from Japanese competition, restrained import of semiconductors and automobiles, and took myriad similar steps to keep American industry strong. The same can be said of Richard Nixon. In 1971, Nixon imposed a temporary tariff on all imports in response to what he perceived to be unfair foreign economic policies. No one would accuse Nixon of being a “liberal” – but his approach was in some ways even more trade-restrictive than what Mr. Trump has suggested.
Trump will also meet with founder, chairman and CEO of the Peebles Corporation, a real estate investment company, Don Peebles on Monday. Additionally, Trump’s Senior Adviser on Policy Stephen Miller with meet with the president-elect.
Chris Reyes, of Reyes Holdings, and Admiral Thad Allen will also be meeting with Trump.
“We do not expect any other announcements today, but we will have further announcements, I’m sure, as we start moving into the week,” Trump’s spokesman Jason Miller told reporters on Monday after Trump announced earlier Monday morning that he wants Vincent Viola is his secretary of the Army.
Trump is spending the week at Mar-a-Lago for the Christmas holiday with his family.
Vice President-elect Mike Pence is in New York City for transition meetings on Monday and then he will be in Washington, D.C. for transition meetings on Tuesday. Pence will spend the Christmas holiday in Indiana.