Barack Obama took another one of his endless “victory laps” the other day. This time he was boasting about his role as savior of the auto industry.
President Barack Obama, who has taken several victory laps to celebrate the successful U.S. bailout of General Motors and Chrysler in 2009, said today he is planning to attend the 2016 Detroit auto show.
The president touted the bailout’s success during his weekly radio address, reminding his audience that the industry nearly collapsed
“Seven years ago, auto sales hit a 27-year low. Last year, they hit an all-time high,” he said.
“Later this month, I’ll visit the Detroit auto show to see this progress firsthand. Because I believe that every American should be proud of what our most iconic industry has done.”
Let’s see if he mentions that bailing out Detroit was George W. Bush’s idea.
But there’s more to this than meets the eye. Despite his interminable self-aggrandizement, Obama has also stuck a dagger into Michigan with his Trans Pacific Partnership:
But his push for new trade agreements is controversial in Michigan, where advocates and local officials say a Korean free trade agreement has helped that country’s auto industry significantly more than the U.S. sector.
“That agreement generally has just slammed Michigan,” said Lori Wallach, director of Global Trade Watch, an advocacy group, in an interview.
The UAW is has similarly been concerned about the TPP:
Toledo — Cori Lortz’s father, an American union worker, opposed the North American Free Trade Agreement in the 1990s. Now, more than 20 years later, she finds herself fighting against another trade policy: the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
“I saw how NAFTA destroyed my dad’s livelihood and I don’t want it to happen to me,” she said Monday at UAW Local 12 in Toledo. Lortz said her father, Larry Middlebrooks, lost his job at a packaging company after operations moved to Mexico as a result of NAFTA.
Lortz, who works at the Toledo Assembly Complex producing the Jeep Cherokee, was one of hundreds of union members and others to attend an anti-TPP forum featuring U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur, D-Toledo, and local UAW leaders.
She’s right to be concerned. In 2013 GM got approval from Obama to build an auto plant in China
General Motors has gotten approval to build a $1.3 billion manufacturing facility for its Cadillac brand in China. China’s National Development and Reform Commission signed off on plans for GM to build the plant in the country’s Shanghai’s Jinqiao zone; construction is expected to begin in June of this year. According to a Bloomberg report, the plant will have an annual production capacity of 150,000 units.
…and begin the process of moving jobs there.
In fact, according to earlier comments by GM China president Bob Socia, it’s at least conceivable that Chinese-built Cadillacs could be shipped back to the US for sale. The brave new world of globalization, getting stranger by the minute.
And sure enough, here it is:
General Motors will be placing a big bet the American public is willing to drive a car built in China when it unveils the Buick Envision on Sunday night.
The largest US automaker is certainly not trying to bring it to market quietly: Buick’s latest sport utility vehicle will be introduced at a lavish party on the eve of the Detroit auto show in the hopes of maximizing media coverage.
Obama and GM have stuck it to the UAW:
The United Auto Workers union, which had lobbied to build the Envision in the United States, called the decision to import it from China a “slap in the face” to taxpayers who bailed GM out of bankruptcy in the wake of the financial 2008 crisis.
China commands a twenty five percent import tariff on US cars sold in China. If the US doesn’t do the same for cars made in China and imported into the US, it will serve as one more reminder of how damnably gullible Obama supporters are.
Now for a serving of irony. Remember this ad?
This is not the first episode of its kind. Jeff Immelt, CEO of GE and huge Obama supporter as well as Obama Jobs Czar, also has sent jobs to China.
Notice the pattern? I keep wondering how much more damage Obama can inflict before he’s gone. Hopefully someone will ask Obama about this while be basks in his own self-instituted magnificence.