Trade negotiators work to get the best deals for American consumers

President Donald Trump relies on a number of advisers to push trade talks to benefit U.S. interests.

These are the people he leans on to put America first.

Wilbur Ross

Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross is a 55 year veteran of investment banking and private equity. In his current office, he is tasked with being the “principle voice of business in the Trump Administration, ensuring that U.S. entrepreneurs and businesses have the tools they need to create jobs and economic opportunity.”

Wilbur Ross stands after being sworn in as Secretary of Commerce in Washington, DC, U.S. February 28, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

In an article for, Secretary Ross stated, “We will not allow other countries to exploit our free market while remaining highly protectionist.” Ross appears to seek fairness to address disparities between the relative openness of the American economy and protectionist policies among trade partners.

Robert Lighthizer

Robert Lighthizer is the United States Trade Representative for President Trump. Lighthizer is an experienced trade negotiator and litigator with “a record of standing up for American workers, farmers, manufacturers, and businesses,” according to his official bio.

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer pauses after a photo opportunity with European Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmstrom and Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, Hiroshige Seko in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2019. (AP Photo

Prior to joining the Trump Administration, Lighthizer served as Deputy US Trade Representative under President Reagan and practiced international law for the law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP. According to the South China Morning Post—a free news agency in Hong Kong—Lighthizer has stated he does not have a problem with President Trump using tariffs to pressure countries on non-trade policy issues.

Steven Mnuchin

Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin is the man charged, by the president, with maintaining a healthy and growing economy. The Secretary has also been instrumental in President Trump’s trade negotiations with China, having traveled to the country with US Trade Representative Lighthizer for negotiations.

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin speaks during the daily press briefing, Thursday, June 29, 2017, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

As reported by Mnuchin has reiterated the president’s promise that Americans will not bear the brunt of tariffs on China. Prior to his position heading the Treasury, Mnuchin was finance chairman for the Trump campaign and had extensive experience working in global financial markets.

Peter Navarro

President Trump’s Director of the Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy Peter Navarro is widely considered a hawk when it comes to the United States’ trade relationship with China.

White House trade and manufacturing adviser Peter Navarro (L), a member of the U.S. trade delegation to China, leaves a hotel in Beijing, China May 3, 2018. REUTERS/Jason Lee - RC1C0BB3BCA0

While discussing tariffs on Chinese steel and aluminum—and the jobs saved in those industries—in an interview for “Mornings with Maria,” the Ph.D. economist stated “we love tariffs. Tariffs are a wonderful thing,” citing the decrease in Chinese exports and profits from production. Navarro’s office was established by President Trump to “defend and serve American workers and domestic manufacturers,” while, among other things, decreasing the trade deficit.