Brown Blasts President Trump, GM CEO Mary Barra for Comments on Lordstown

Despite Doing Nothing to Help Save Lordstown GM Jobs, President Trump Took to Twitter to Blame UAW Union President for GM Closure; then Said GM CEO Mary Barra Blamed Workers too; Brown Calls President’s Comments Disgraceful; Says Barra Owes Workers an Explanation

CLEVELAND, OH – U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) today blasted President Trump for his comments yesterday on Lordstown. Despite doing nothing to help save the Lordstown GM plant, President Trump took to Twitter yesterday to ridicule United Automobile Workers (UAW) Local 1112 President David Green. Brown called Trump’s comments disgraceful, and said Dave Green has been fighting for months to save these jobs in Lordstown. President Trump then sent a follow-up tweet yesterday describing a conversation he had with GM CEO Mary Barra. According to the President, during their conversation Barra also blamed the UAW and workers for the plant closure.

In 2018, J.D. Power ranked the Lordstown plant as number one for the highest quality production among GM’s facilities. Brown called the President’s comments about the UAW shameful, and urged him yet again to support the American Cars, American Jobs Act. Brown’s bill would get rid of the incentives in the GOP tax bill that encourage auto manufacturers to ship jobs overseas. Moreover, Brown is demanding Barra clarify what she told the President and why she would blame workers when this plant has received such high ratings for its effectiveness. 

“The President’s comments about the UAW are disgraceful. Local 1112 President Dave Green has done nothing but fight for workers in Lordstown, while the President has made lots of big promises and failed to stand up for workers at every turn. As President Green said, President Trump should support my American Cars, American Jobs Act to keep auto jobs in Ohio, and GM CEO Mary Barra owes the workers from this highly productive plant an explanation for her comments,” said Brown. “Instead of fighting to save these jobs, President Trump decided to side with corporations and give companies like GM massive tax breaks to shut down American factories and ship jobs overseas.” 

Brown has been calling on President Trump to do the right thing and demand that GM use its massive tax windfall from last year’s GOP tax bill to keep these jobs in Ohio. Under last year’s Republican tax bill, championed by President Trump, companies are rewarded with a lower tax rate when shipping American jobs overseas. Brown instead urged the President to support his American Cars American Jobs Act, which would get rid of these incentives for auto manufacturers to close American factories and send jobs overseas. The Toledo Blade editorialized that Brown’s bill would “put America and American workers first.” 

Senators Brown and Rob Portman (R-OH) have continually urged GM to invest in this highly productive facility, rather than shutter its doors. The Senators have also demanded answers on the potential job and supply chain impacts, should GM decide to pursue its disastrous decision to close the plant. The Senators have met with GM’s CEO Mary Barra several times and urged the company to save these jobs following GM’s announcement that it would lay off its final shift of workers and close its Lordstown plant in March of 2019.

Last year, GM announced plans to build the new Chevy Blazer in Mexico on the same day the company ended the second shift at a plant. GM has eliminated nearly 3,000 jobs at the plant over the last two years.