Former US Senator Fritz Hollings (D-SC, 1966-2005), and a former governor of South Carolina, saw first hand the destruction of our textile industry. He nailed the trade issue in an article supporting tariffs back in 2010:
Introduce a trade bill in the Congress to protect America’s production and jobs, and coming down on your head crying “free trade,” “don’t start a trade war” will be the bailout and bonus crowd — Wall Street, the big banks, the Business Roundtable, the National Association of Manufacturers, the U. S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Retail Federation of America, and the morning paper editorialists with the newspapers making the majority of their profits from retail advertising and their economists. The bailout and bonus crowd furnish the contributions for the campaign, and the first order of business for a Congressman or Senator is to get the money to get re-elected.
The U. S. was founded in a trade war. The Mother Country prohibited manufacture in the colony, and the Navigation Act of 1651 required the colony’s exports to be carried in English bottoms. The timber was from Maine, but ships were built in England. The Townsend Act triggered the Boston Tea Party which began the Revolution. Four years before the forefathers could agree on the freedoms of speech, religion, press and assembly, foremost in their minds was trade. Article I, Section 8, on the Constitution of 1787 authorized Congress to regulate trade. The Constitution doesn’t provide for “free trade” - only regulated trade. We financed and built the industrial giant, U.S.A., with protectionist tariffs. ...."