The re-election campaign of President Joe Biden has launched its first television ad focused on Michigan, just before former President Donald Trump’s visit to the state. The ad, titled “Delivers,” criticizes Trump for his tax benefits to the wealthy while Michigan’s plants and manufacturing jobs were being shut down. The commercial emphasizes Biden’s track record in delivering results for the state and highlights the rebirth of the manufacturing industry in Michigan during his administration.
Simultaneously, the Democratic National Committee is presenting billboards in Metro Detroit condemning Trump’s approach to cars. One of the billboards states that thousands of auto industry workers were laid off during Trump’s presidency, branding his promises as unfulfilled. The early Democratic offensive, over a year before the November 2024 elections, aims to counter Trump’s anticipated speech at an automotive supplier in Clinton Township.
During his visit to Michigan in June, Trump criticized Biden’s support for electric vehicles, arguing that the shift would lead to job losses and benefit China. However, a report from the United Auto Workers acknowledges that the transition to electric vehicles requires replacing powertrain components with lithium batteries and electric motors, which are often manufactured by suppliers in other countries, especially China.
While Biden has been an advocate for electric vehicles, his administration has also made investments in high-tech domestic manufacturing to strengthen the country’s competitiveness against China. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that the number of jobs in vehicle and parts manufacturing in Michigan has remained relatively stable during Biden’s tenure, increasing by 2% to around 169,000 jobs in August.
During Trump’s presidency, however, the industry experienced a 5% decline in jobs, reaching approximately 166,000, although this can be partially attributed to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Trump had emphasized his efforts to renegotiate trade agreements for the benefit of American manufacturing, such as the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, which received praise from automakers and industrial groups.
Trump’s visit to Michigan comes amid a strike by the United Auto Workers against major automakers GM, Ford, and Stellantis. While Trump is expected to appeal to union workers during his speech, the automotive supplier Drake Enterprises, where the event will take place, does not have a unionized workforce.
Overall, the early attacks from Biden’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee indicate a preemptive attempt to counter Trump’s message about the auto industry and highlight Biden’s track record in Michigan as the 2024 presidential race unfolds.
– “Delivers.” Biden for President.
– Munoz, Kevin. Biden campaign spokesperson.
– Fain, Shawn. President of the United Auto Workers.
– Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.