The protectionist promises from the remaining liberal presidential candidates continues to strain American leadership on free trade even before they take office. Today British foreign secretary David Miliband, who is in the US meeting with aides from both presidential campaigns this week, told the Financial Times:

American internationalism has been a feature of all periods of global progress . . . It’s absolutely clear that the world needs an America that’s engaged with the global trading system in a very fundamental, very committed way . . . The problem is not too much trade, the problem is too little trade. That is our position as a British government, and it will be articulated clearly and consistently.