by Terry Bowman
Workers for Trump, an organization I’m proud to chair, just hosted its first event in Saginaw.
Working people here in Michigan took a gamble on Donald Trump back in 2016, and this event was a celebration of the fact that our bet paid off in such a big way.
The unemployment rate here in the Wolverine state is holding steady at 4.1 percent after reaching its lowest level of the 21st century last year. Wages are growing at a rate above 3 percent, mirroring an encouraging nationwide trend. Auto manufacturers and other manufacturers have invested billions of dollars here in Michigan, instead of overseas, as part of the renaissance of American manufacturing that President Trump promised and delivered.
There is more good news still to come from this strong and growing economy, but it’s important to take stock of just how significant the story so far is from a political perspective.
Wall Street, Hollywood, and Silicon Valley all scorned Trump’s candidacy in 2016. Even the leafy suburbs full of “Rockefeller Republicans” were largely indifferent. Those just aren’t the kind of voters who put Donald Trump in the White House. It was the American Worker who elected him, upending entrenched assumptions about electoral politics in the process.
Working people across the country — especially here in the Midwest — knowingly took a chance by voting for a political outsider who promised to drain the D.C. swamp and look after the interests of Americans who had previously been forgotten by establishment politicians. They knew, after eight frustrating years of economic stagnation under Barack Obama, that they had little to gain from Hillary Clinton’s slavish devotion to Wall Street money handlers, to whom she promised to deliver “open trade and open borders.”
Donald Trump, conversely, articulated a plan designed to benefit Americans, not prop up the “global” economy at the expense of prosperity here in the U.S. He promised a fair trade policy that would hold trade abusers such as China to account and protect American jobs. He promised an immigration policy that would protect American workers’ wages from unfair competition at home, as well.
President Trump has delivered on all of those promises, and American workers are collecting the payoff from their wise bet.
For 25 years, American manufacturing jobs have been sucked out of this country by the poorly negotiated North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). President Trump’s U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), which House Speaker Nancy Pelosi kept in legislative limbo for almost a year while Democrats obsessed over impeachment, will correct NAFTA’s deficiencies and create hundreds of thousands of American jobs. For the first time, factories in Mexico will be required to guarantee American-style labor rights and pay wages closer to those earned by American workers. This will remove one of the primary incentives for American companies to relocate jobs south of the border, because employers who exploit low-cost Mexican labor will no longer be able to enjoy tariff-free access to the U.S. market.
Meanwhile, apprehensions at the southern border have decreased dramatically over the past six months, reflecting the success of President Trump’s border security initiatives. The wall is finally being built, and some of the most glaring loopholes in our immigration law have been closed, dramatically reducing the supply of cheap, illegal immigrant labor.
The President’s unflinching approach to trade negotiations with China is about to deliver a huge windfall for American workers, as well, especially in the agriculture and technology sectors. In addition to substantial purchases of American farm products, China has also made vital concessions on the issue of intellectual property theft as part of a “Phase One” agreement with White House negotiators.
Three years ago, it wasn’t easy for workers to walk away from the Democratic Party, which had been the political home of so many of our parents and grandparents. Our union leaders were reluctant to turn their backs on their longtime Democrat allies, even in light of Hillary Clinton’s undeniably anti-worker platform, continuing to use money from dues to prop up Clinton’s flailing campaign. Nevertheless, hundreds of thousands of workers in Michigan took a leap of faith, betting that Donald Trump would follow through on his promises. Today, the whole country owes its economic prosperity to the faith these workers placed in Donald Trump.
Next year, we won’t have to roll the dice, because it’s now clear that re-electing President Trump is a sure thing. So join me at workers.donaldjtrump.com and we’ll make sure we get another four years of this progress.
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Terry Bowman is the chairman of Workers for Trump as well as co-chairman of the Republican Party of Michigan.