Trump's promised 'manufacturing miracle' failed to materialize - TAI News
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President Donald Trump participates in a Foxconn groundbreaking cermony, Thursday, June 28, 2018, in Mt. Pleasant, Wis. From left, Trump, Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou, and Speaker of the House Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

On May 9, President Joe Biden traveled to Racine, Wisconsin to announce a plan by Microsoft to build a $3.3 billion data center. The White House said that it expects the project to result in 2,300 unionized construction jobs and 2,000 permanent jobs in the area.

The site selected by Microsoft is the same site where, in 2017, then-President Donald Trump announced a $10 billion investment by Foxconn for a manufacturing facility. By 2021, Foxconn abandoned most of its plans and never delivered on promise to bring 13,000 new jobs.In his remarks at the ceremony, Biden chided Trump for his failure to deliver during his time in office.

“He and his administration promised a $10 billion investment by Foxconn to build a new manufacturing complex and create 13,000 new jobs. In fact, he came here with your senator, Ron Johnson, literally holding a golden shovel, promising to build the ‘eighth wonder of the world,” Biden said.

“Look what happened. They dug a hole with those golden shovels, and then they fell into it.”

The failure of the Foxconn facility is part of an overall downward trend in manufacturing that occurred under Trump’s administration.

In 2020, Trump said that his policies had led to a “manufacturing miracle,” but according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the United States lost nearly 200,000 jobs on his watch. By comparison, over 700,000 manufacturing jobs have been added since Biden took office in 2021.

An August 2020 report from the nonpartisan Economic Policy Institute determined that trade policies under Trump did not slow offshoring of U.S. jobs and that his mismanagement of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic led to weakness in manufacturing.

“The Trump administration has taken credit for ‘reshoring’ manufacturing jobs, but the data show that isn’t true. Nearly 1,800 factories have disappeared under Trump between 2016 and 2018,” EPI senior economist Robert E. Scott said in a statement accompanying the report.

The Biden administration has emphasized the role of manufacturing in legislation that Biden has signed into law. Provisions in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act prioritize domestically made goods for infrastructure projects, the CHIPS and Science Act gives companies tax incentives to build U.S.-based manufacturing facilities, and the Inflation Reduction Act is intended to prompt domestic manufacturing related to the transition to clean energy.

According to the White House, there have been over $860 billion in private commitments made for manufacturing projects since Biden took office, with $2 billion of that directed towards Wisconsin.

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