After months of threatening to levy a 35% border tax a cars imported from Mexico, Trump will sit down with the CEO's of the Big 3 domestic auto manufacturers this morning to discuss ideas on how to keep manufacturing jobs in the U.S. Trump sent the following tweet previewing the meeting saying he wants "plants to be built here for cars sold here!"
Will be meeting at 9:00 with top automobile executives concerning jobs in America. I want new plants to be built here for cars sold here!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 24, 2017
We suspect the meeting will include a little tit-for-tat with auto executives seeking to cut onerous Obama regulations including the fuel efficiency standard he signed into law back in 2011 requiring OEM fleets to have an average 54.5 mpg fuel economy rating by 2025. Per a statement from Sean Spicer, the White House will be looking for any and all ideas from the Big 3 CEO's on how to keep jobs in the U.S. Per Reuters:
It will be the first time the CEOs of the big three automakers meet jointly with a U.S. president since a July 2011 session with then-president Barack Obama to tout a deal to nearly double fuel efficiency standards to 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025. Fiat Chrysler is the Italian-American parent of the former Michigan-based Chrysler.
White House spokesman Sean Spicer on Monday said Trump "looks forward to hearing their ideas about how we can work together to bring more jobs back to this industry."
Of course, this meeting with auto execs come after months of tweet storms from the President which sent a very clear message to businesses looking to offshore manufacturing operations that imports would be hit with a massive 35% tariff. Here is a December 4th tweet storm from the President-elect on the topic:
The U.S. is going to substantialy reduce taxes and regulations on businesses, but any business that leaves our country for another country,— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 4, 2016
fires its employees, builds a new factory or plant in the other country, and then thinks it will sell its product back into the U.S. ......— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 4, 2016
without retribution or consequence, is WRONG! There will be a tax on our soon to be strong border of 35% for these companies ......— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 4, 2016
wanting to sell their product, cars, A.C. units etc., back across the border. This tax will make leaving financially difficult, but.....— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 4, 2016
these companies are able to move between all 50 states, with no tax or tariff being charged. Please be forewarned prior to making a very ...— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 4, 2016
expensive mistake! THE UNITED STATES IS OPEN FOR BUSINESS— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 4, 2016
Meanwhile, General Motors was the latest direct target of Trump's Twitter wrath:
General Motors is sending Mexican made model of Chevy Cruze to U.S. car dealers-tax free across border. Make in U.S.A.or pay big border tax!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 3, 2017
And while the mainstream media will likely continue to paint Trump's initial meetings with business leaders as an unwelcome attempt to meddle in their affairs, we suspect the unemployed people of Detroit, those who used to vote Democrat and flipped to Trump in a "big league" way in November, won't mind a bit.