WASHINGTON (AP) -- Robert Lighthizer has been sworn in as the country's next U.S. Trade Representative.

Vice President Mike Pence is calling Lighthizer "uniquely qualified" for the job and says he'll help ensure the nation's trade deals benefit the American people.

Lighthizer was confirmed last week on a bipartisan vote despite complaints from some Republicans that the Trump administration has an "incoherent and inconsistent trade message."

President Donald Trump has broken with most Republicans in his criticism of free trade agreements.

Lighthizer previously served as deputy U.S. trade representative under President Ronald Reagan and has worked on trade issues as a lawyer representing various manufacturers and high-tech companies.