Trump was again dishonest about the industry on Sunday – both on Twitter and at a campaign rally in Macomb County. Let’s look at each of his statements.
In a tweet on Sunday aimed at Michigan voters, Trump stated that by the time he became president, the state was “hemorrhaging car companies and jobs.”
Also, auto manufacturing jobs in Michigan have not recovered since Trump took office. Even before the temporary coronavirus epidemic caused auto jobs to plummet in early 2020, Michigan actually lost jobs in car manufacturing under Trump.
There are 40,300 jobs in the vehicle manufacturing sector in Michigan as of February 2020 – a decrease of 2,1
00 from February 2017, the first month Mr. Trump took office. The most recent number, the preliminary number for September 2020, is 37,600 jobs in the vehicle manufacturing sector in Michigan, a decrease of 4,800 from February 2017.
The number of auto parts jobs was essentially unchanged under Trump until the pandemic struck. There are 131,500 such jobs in Michigan as of February 2020, up only 100 jobs compared to February 2017. September 2020 number was 118,400 jobs in the auto parts manufacturing sector in Michigan, down 13,000 jobs compared to February 2017.
Kristin Dziczek, vice president of industry, labor and economics at the Michigan-based Automotive Research Center, says employment in both the vehicle and parts manufacturing industry in Michigan has seen a ” The steady growth trend “started in mid-2009 – that was the Obama administration’s first year – and continued through early 2015 for vehicles and early 2019 for parts.
The Michigan Auto Factories under the Obama era
“You didn’t have any auto factories four years ago,” Trump declared at the rally.
The first event: This is clearly wrong. Michigan, which makes cars for over a centuryand never stopped having a car factory under Obama. There were 13 auto or truck assembly plants in Michigan in December 2016, the last month of the Obama presidency, according to Automotive News’s factory category – and there are still 13 such plants in Michigan as of December. October 2020, according to the publication’s category. from last month.
Japanese and Michigan automobile factories
At the Macomb County rally, Trump repeated his familiar story of how he supposedly pressured the then Japanese prime minister, Shinzo Abe, to ask five Japanese companies to announce “on the next day “that they” moved to Michigan “.
(Trump didn’t make it clear this time that the five companies are auto companies, but he just talked about the auto industry and he identified them as auto companies in previous versions of the story. .)
The first event: We don’t know what Trump and Abe might have said to each other privately, but the story’s impressive conclusion is untrue: there isn’t a single day in Trump’s presidency that five auto companies Japan announced it would move to the US, in particular to Michigan.
Toyota made the announcement in 2019 that it is investing $ 749 million in its operations in 5 states, but it is a company and Michigan is not one of those states. Dziczek has identified five Japanese investments in Michigan by Japanese carmakers under the Trump era, but she said none of the factories were auto assembly plants – previous versions of the Trump inter-Trump story. in relation to Japanese companies announcing “five factories” – and only one production base.
That $ 85 million production investment, announced less than two weeks after Trump’s presidency in 2017, is a joint venture between General Motors and Honda to make hydrogen fuel cell systems in a plant. Current GM. GM says the fuel cell initiative will create “nearly 100 jobs” by 2017; Dziczek notes that “an automobile assembly plant typically uses about 2,000 work shifts.”
History of the automobile factories in Michigan
Trump said at the Macomb County rally, “No new factories were built in Michigan for decades and decades before I got here.” At a rally in Pennsylvania last week, he claimed it had been “42 years” since an auto factory was built in Michigan.
The first event: Trump is Mistake Again. Dziczek notes the assembly of the Lansing Delta Town by General Motors tree opened in 2006.
Plants under Trump
Trump stated on Twitter that, under him, “many factories are and have been built.”
The first event: Trump exaggerated. During his presidency, there was a total of three announcements Among new automobile assembly plants in Michigan – one of which is the large facility opened by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, and two of them are small by automotive factory standards.
Fiat Chrysler announced it will invest $ 1.6 billion to revise the dormant Detroit engine plant into a Jeep Grand Cherokee assembly plant and a new SUV, creating about 3,850 jobs.
Waymo, a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc., said it would invest about $ 14 million to retrofit a Detroit factory to produce self-driving cars. Navya, a French self-driving bus company, opened a small factory it said in 2018 employed 25 people.
There have also been large investments by automakers in existing factories in Michigan. But Trump stretched the truth as he suggested a huge number of new factories were being built during his tenure.
A dead industry?
During a “remote protest” with the people of Michigan in early October, Trump said, “The administration is finally killing the American auto industry. I saved the auto industry, I brought it back. “The auto industry in this country is dead.”
The first event: As we noted above, the auto industry was clearly not dead when Trump took office – but it is worth noting that the claim that the Obama administration “killed” the auto industry is a particularly serious reversal of reality. The Obama administration, along with the George W. Bush administration, helped the rescue industry received federal bailout during the economic crisis of 2008 and 2009.