CLEVELAND, OH – U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) invited President Donald Trump to Ohio to see the devastation of unfair, cheap foreign steel imports on Ohio steel mills and steelworkers, as the President makes his decision in the Administration’s pending investigation into the impact of steel imports on national security, known as the “232” investigation. On Friday, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross shared the findings of his Department’s investigation, and Brown urged the President again to make a decision in the case. The invitation follows Brown’s meeting with Trump and Ross at the White House last week.

“Our steel companies and steelworkers deserve the chance to compete on a level playing field, too, and I invite you to come to Ohio and tour a steel mill with me,” said Brown in a letter to Trump. “This opportunity would allow you to see firsthand how impressive our steel manufacturers are and hear directly from the workers about the impact global steel overcapacity and unfair trade practices have had on their jobs and families. In addition, this tour will make sure U.S. steelworkers get to participate in the Section 232 decision-making, which will directly affect their livelihoods.”

Brown, who applauded the Administration’s decision to launch the investigation into the impact of certain steel imports on national security, has called on the Administration to make a determination in the case for several months.

Immediately after President Trump’s election, Brown reached out to his transition team to offer his help in retooling U.S. trade policy. Brown wrote to Trump in November 2016 offering specific steps to work together on trade and Trump responded with a handwritten note. Brown has called on Administrations of both parties to help reduce China’s steel overcapacity, which leaves U.S. steelworkers and companies at a competitive disadvantage.

 

Full text of the letter below and attached. 

 

President Donald Trump

The White House

Washington, D.C. 20500

 

Dear President Trump:

 

Thank you for holding the important meeting on trade earlier this week at the White House.  As I mentioned on Tuesday, since your election, I have been eager to work with you to rewrite U.S. trade policy so that it works for American workers.  A critical part of reshaping our approach to trade is getting tough on trade enforcement.

I strongly supported your decision to impose remedies in the Section 201 case on large residential washers.   As you know, Whirlpool has a plant of more than 3,000 workers in Clyde, Ohio, where they make washing machines.  I have been to that facility many times and met many of the workers there.  They are the best in the world.  The Section 201 remedies will help those workers in Clyde keep their jobs and led Whirlpool to announce the addition of 200 jobs at that facility.  

I urge you to take similarly comprehensive and targeted action in the Section 232 investigation on steel imports.  I know some stakeholders are advising you otherwise, but the washers case demonstrated that the U.S. can crack down on trade cheats without roiling the stock market or undermining supply chains.  American steelworkers – like the Whirlpool workers in Clyde –are the best in the world at what they do.  The ArcelorMittal plant in Cleveland, Ohio is proof of that.  That plant was the first ever to produce one ton of steel in just over one worker hour. 

Our steel companies and steelworkers deserve the chance to compete on a level playing field, too, and I invite you to come to Ohio and tour a steel mill with me.  This opportunity would allow you to see firsthand how impressive our steel manufacturers are and hear directly from the workers about the impact global steel overcapacity and unfair trade practices have had on their jobs and families.  In addition, this tour will make sure U.S. steelworkers get to participate in the Section 232 decision-making, which will directly affect their livelihoods.

I hope we can plan this great event together.  Moreover, I look forward to working with you to rewrite U.S. trade policy so that it works for American workers. 

 

Sincerely,

Sherrod Brown

United States Senator

 

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