Trump claims electric vehicle shift will kill jobs, so UAW talks don’t matter

Credit: UAW

On Wednesday, former US President Donald Trump expressed his thoughts about the ongoing strike by the United Auto Workers (UAW) union. Trump noted that it didn’t really matter if the union could strike a favorable deal with the Detroit Big Three, since the shift to electric vehicles would make them obsolete anyway.

Carmakers and the Biden administration have adopted an optimistic stance with the emerging electric vehicle sector. Trump, however, took an opposing stance in his statement, predicting that the US auto industry would see large losses in a few years. 

“It doesn’t make a damn bit of difference what you get because in two years, you’re all going to be out of business,” Trump said. 

Trump pledged to end the US government’s push towards electric vehicles if he gets elected president once more. “I don’t care what you get in the next two weeks or three weeks or five weeks. They’re going to be closing up, and they’re going to be building those cars in China and other places. It’s a hit job in Michigan and in Detroit,” he said. 

The Biden campaign, for its part, issued a response to Trump’s comments by dubbing the former president a “billionaire charlatan.” The Biden campaign also argued that Trump did not care about the working class during his time in office. 

“Donald Trump is lying about President Biden’s agenda to distract from his failed track record of trickle-down tax cuts, closed factories, and jobs outsourced to China,” the Biden campaign noted. 

As noted in a Reuters report, the UAW has not expressed its support for any presidential candidate as of date, unlike other unions in the country. The UAW’s leadership has generally welcomed support from the Biden administration, however, and they have also shared some criticism of the Trump presidency. 

While the UAW’s ongoing strike is motivated by the union’s desire to secure more pay and benefits for its members, the specter of the electric vehicle transition is evident in the group’s protest. EVs, after all, are much less complicated machines than combustion-powered cars and thus require less labor.  

Mark Barrott, an automotive analyst at the Michigan-based consultancy Plante Moran, explained the quiet rationale of the UAW strike in a previous comment. “This strike is about electrification,” he said. 

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Trump claims electric vehicle shift will kill jobs, so UAW talks don’t matter
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