GM Says Its Committed To American Manufacturing As Trump Threatens To Cut Off Subsidies

General Motors’ decision to idle five plants, trim its salaried workforce by 15 percent and cease North American production of six different models sparked outrage on both sides of the US-Canadian boarder.

Canada’s prime minister, Justin Trudeau, was the first to speak out as he tweeted “GM workers have been part of the heart and soul of Oshawa for generations – and we’ll do everything we can to help the families affected by this news get back on their feet.” Trudeau went on to say he spoke with GM CEO Mary Barra on Sunday to “express my deep disappointment in the closure [of the Oshawa Assembly Plant in Ontario].”

President Trump’s response wasn’t as measured as he tweeted “Very disappointed with General Motors and their CEO, Mary Barra, for closing plants in Ohio, Michigan and Maryland. Nothing being closed in Mexico & China. The U.S. saved General Motors, and this is the THANKS we get!”

Trump went on threaten to cut all GM subsidies – including those for electric vehicles. If this were to happen, it could prove disastrous for the company as it has plans to introduce at least 20 new electric vehicles by 2023.  Of course, the company is already nearing its EV tax credit limit so it might not have much effect unless the subsidies are extended.

Regardless, Trump went on to say “General Motors made a big China bet years ago when they built plants there (and in Mexico) – [I] don’t think that bet is going to pay off. I am here to protect America’s Workers!”

Unions were also angered by the move and the UAW said “General Motors decision … to stop production at the Lordstown, Ohio, and Hamtramck, Michigan, assembly plants will idle thousands of workers, and will not go unchallenged.” UAW Vice President Terry Dittes even echoed Trump as he stated “GM’s production decisions, in light of employee concessions during the economic downturn and a taxpayer bailout from bankruptcy, puts profits before the working families of this country whose personal sacrifices stood with GM during those dark days.”

The union went on to note that products – such as the Chevrolet Blazer and Buick Envision – which could have been built in the affected plants are instead produced in Mexico and China.

Needless to say, GM is feeling the heat and decided to respond with a short statement saying it is “committed to maintaining a strong manufacturing presence in the U.S.” The automaker went on to say the recently announced cuts are designed to support the company’s future and position it for long-term success so it can “maintain and grow American jobs.”

While that’s little comfort to the thousands of GM employees impacted by the changes, the company said many factory workers will have the option to transfer to other plants where the company builds more successful trucks, crossovers and SUVs. GM went on to say it plans to add new technical and engineering jobs to support future electric and autonomous vehicles.

  • Mr. EP9

    I expect this to be a very messy affair.

  • Merc1

    Trump = SHEER IGNORANCE.

    M

  • THIS IS A CAR BLOG. A STORY ABOUT ELON, PUT A PIC OF A TESLA. A STORY ABOUT MARY, FIND A PIC OF A GM CAR. A STORY ABOUT THE TOADSTOOL, PLEASE ANYTHING BUT HIS FACE. WE COME HERE TO SEE CARS NOT PEOPLE. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/ed82563b835c68d0f188d5f04b9dd6468d1b93a83f27b0fb1f2a4eed5364a379.jpg

  • brn

    I don’t think it’s within his power.

    On a side note, the demise of the word ‘literally’ saddens me.

    • karmat

      I fell out of my chair laughing when I read this. Figuratively speaking that is…I didn’t actually fall down.

  • karmat

    It wouldn’t be right to cut the subsidies from only one company. That being said, no company should be getting subsidies.

  • tkindred

    President shouldn’t be threatening or critisizing companies like GM, Amazon and Harley. He may have his little fits but they aren’t breaking any laws. Their sales and stock were effected by his attacks on them. President should have influence over free enterprise.

    • TB

      He’s a total Orange Douche…what else would you expect? Deflect and blame someone else for promises he can’t keep. GM now falls into that category.

    • bd0007

      If the Orange twit cared so much, he should have made sure that is own crappy licensed/branded products were made here (instead of China and SE Asia).

      Not to mention importing cheap Polish construction workers (who ended up living in horrible conditions while they worked), repeatedly stiffing small contractors and hiring foreign workers for his hotels and resorts.

  • MarketAndChurch

    ev’s are only the future if democrats win elections. ev’s aren’t consumer preference. people only buy them out of a fear of future govt regulations.

    • tkindred

      Really? Never heard of that one. I guess the consumer trend of EV sales will decline in US, China, Europe, etc if Republicans are elected? That didn’t happen after the Republicans took contol of much of the government a couple years ago. What are you basing your conclusion off of?

    • Enter Ranting

      People are buying Teslas not because of the performance, but because they’re afraid of government regulations. Got it. Moving on…

    • bd0007

      Funny, didn’t realize that the Democrats also governed Europe, South Korea, Japan and China – where EVs are getting more and more popular.

  • charlotteharry57

    OF COURSE GM HAS to say that. Mary’s head is already half chopped off and there’s a pretty good chance it will fall off. Someone said she’s a clueless lifer and I have to agree. SOME of the decisions make sense, but not all. How ’bout fixing the situation over the past few years, namely overpriced and underequipped vehicles of often-questionable quality? But profits and share prices are FAR more important. Well, that backfired.

  • Enter Ranting

    Trump’s comments on business would be taken more seriously if he had any understanding of business to begin with. Sad.

  • bd0007

    So, GM is supposed to keep building cars that few buyers want?

    Leading to under-utilized plants which is the biggest killer to profits for an automaker?

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