President Trump responded to General Motors decision to close four U.S. production facilities on Monday with tough criticism for CEO Mary Barra.
The Hill reported Monday that President Trump said he’d spoken with Barra after the automaker announced nearly 15,000 workers would be laid off at the four U.S. plants. The plants scheduled to go idle and shut down are the Lordstown plant in Warren, Ohio, Detroit-Hamtramck in Michigan, Baltimore transmission operation in Maryland, and Warren transmission operation in Michigan.
— CBS News (@CBSNews) November 26, 2018
The president said he’s “not happy” about GM’s decision to close the plant in Ohio, a crucial state that helped him win the election in 2016. However, he said he doesn’t think GM will follow through on its closure.
“I have no doubt that in a not too distant future they’ll put something else. They better put something else in,” he said.
He added there will be a lot of pressure on GM as it moves to shut down the four plants and he told Barra to put a car in the Ohio plant that sells well. The Lordstown plant only builds the Chevrolet Cruze sedan for the U.S. market. The Cruze hatchback is built in Mexico for export, while the sedan is also built in Mexico for the local market and Canada. GM announced the Cruze sedan and hatch would exit the U.S. market next year, but it will likely remain on sale in other countries.
President Trump also demanded GM stop building cars in China and the automaker “better damn well open a new plant [in Ohio] very quickly,” according to the Wall Street Journal. The automaker sources one vehicle from China, the Buick Envision. The Cadillac CT6 Plug-In was also imported from China, but the automaker axed the model for 2019. The Cadillac CT6 will exit production next year with the Detroit-Hamtramck shutdown.
There are no plans to retool either the Lordstown or Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plants and the facilities will not be up for product allocation.