The recently negotiated FTA with South Korea is particularly important since Seoul has been moving closer to China. Agreeing to a FTA with Taiwan could help ease that country's increased sense of isolation.
Over the last decade the US economy has generated a net increase of 1 million jobs annually.
"Off-shoring" has become politically contentious, but economist Jacob Funk Kirkegaard figures that this process is responsible for only about 5 percent of lay-offs.
That the number of job losses is small in a macro-economic sense obviously does not help those who end up unemployed. But using trade barriers to hold jobs costs on average more than US$230,000 per job; in some industries the cost to US consumers is nearly US$1.4 million per "saved" job.
Other nations pay a similar price. Unfortunately, there are growing numbers of Republicans and Democrats alike who are abandoning their past support for open international markets.
Yet if there is one incontestable axiom of economics, it is that open markets yield growth and prosperity, rising employment and income, and accelerating technological advance.
All countries have a stake in continued US support for an open international economy. Global economic prosperity is too important to sacrifice for the political advantage of any political party.
Doug Bandow is the Cobden Fellow in Free Enterprise with the Competitive Enterprise Institute.