Okay, that's not quite what the article said. Instead it told readers:
"Republicans have long championed free trade, believing that by allowing markets to operate unhindered, nations can boost domestic industries, lift their wages and improve living standards."
Wow, so Republicans are motivated by a concern over workers' living standards. It's good we have the NYT to tell us this because we certainly wouldn't know about Republicans' concern for workers based on their behavior. (Yes, Democrats are politicians too and it is reasonable to assume that politicians of both parties are first and foremost concerned about their re-election, which means appeasing powerful interest groups.)
The piece misrepresents many other issues, especially with its repeated use of the term "free trade." What exactly about longer and stronger patent and copyright protection is "free trade?" It's fine that the NYT likes these forms of protectionism and apparently approves of the massive upward redistribution that results from these market interventions, but it is a lie of Trumpian proportions to call them "free trade."
Also our "free trade" deals have done almost nothing to free up trade in highly paid professional services, like those offered by doctors and dentists. As a result our doctors and dentists are paid roughly twice as much as their counterparts in other wealthy countries.
The piece also notes the rise of populism on the left and right and then incredibly tells readers:
"The fissures over trade are a product of a surge in populism on both the political right and left. ...
"Growing anxieties about the unforeseen costs of globalization, the overhang of the financial crisis and the stagnation of the middle class have deeply damaged voters’ faith in the ability of free markets to deliver prosperity — and fractured the Republican Party in the process."
The costs of globalization were hardly "unforeseen." Many of us tried as hard as we could to warn of the costs of exposing large segments of the U.S. workforce to competition with much lower paid workers in the developing world. The more appropriate word here would be "ignored," as in the people in positions of authority deliberately chose to ignore both evidence and the predictions of standard trade theory in pushing trade deals that had the predicted effect of redistributing income upward.
It is also misleading to refer to "free markets" in this context. Trade deals that protect the most highly paid workers, longer and stronger patent and copyright protection, and bailouts of the financial industry when it faces bankruptcy are not characteristics of a free market.
(Yes, all this is covered in my (free) book Rigged: How Globalization and the Rule of the Modern Economy Were Structured to Make the Rich Richer.)