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Trump plans to meet with striking auto workers in Michigan instead of attending the second GOP debate

Ex-president donald trump will travel to Michigan State’s battleground next week to meet auto workers on strike instead of participating in the second Republican presidential debate, a person familiar with his plans said Monday.

Trump, who also skipped the first debate last month, has signaled that he is already focused on the 2024 elections against the president Joe Biden as he maintains a wide lead over his Republican rivals in primary polls. In recent days, he has leaned heavily toward the strike, painting himself as a worker sympathizer and accusing Biden of trying to destroy the auto industry by expanding electric cars and other green energy policies.

The Sept. 27 trip, first reported by The New York Times, will also include a prime-time speech, according to the person familiar with the plans who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity before they were made public .

That’s the date others in the GOP camp will gather at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Calif., for the cycle cycle. second primary debate.

When his GOP colleagues gathered in Milwaukee last month, Trump participated in a pre-recorded interview with Tucker Carlson that aired on the social media platform formerly known as Twitter during the first hour of the debate.

Trump has long tried to paint himself as a fighter for the “forgotten men and women” of the working class and spent much of his 2016 campaign campaigning in Rust Belt towns suffering from mining and industrial change manufacturing Earlier this year, he visited East Palestine, Ohio, after a train derailment, visiting aides have considered a key moment in his campaign as he works to rebound from midterm losses and tries to shift his focus away from his 2020 loss.

Ammar Moussa, a spokesman for the Biden campaign, said Monday: “Donald Trump is going to Michigan next week to lie to Michigan workers and pretend he didn’t spend his entire failed presidency selling them out at every turn. Instead of “Standing with workers, Trump slashed taxes on the super-rich while auto companies closed their doors and shipped American jobs overseas.” Moussa argued that Trump would have let auto companies fail during the financial crisis instead of bailing them out, as President Barack Obama did in 2009.

On Monday, the United Auto Workers and Detroit’s three major automakers resumed talks to end a strike now on its fourth day. Stellantis described the discussion as “constructive.” A General Motors spokesman said representatives of the company and the United Auto Workers were still negotiating.

Dave Green, UAW regional director for Ohio and Indiana, said the former president’s actions during his time in office give him “zero credibility” with organized labor now, adding that he doesn’t see how the UAW would endorse never trump

“His only intention here is to try to get votes for himself. And we also divide our members against each other using political rhetoric,” Green told the AP on Monday.

trump earlier this summer he traveled to Michigan, where the Oakland County GOP honored him as its Man of the Decade. Asked about the strike in an interview that aired Sunday, he told NBC News that “auto workers won’t have any jobs” because “electric cars, automatically, will be made in China.”

“Autoworkers are being sold out by their leadership, and their leadership should support Trump,” he added.


Associated Press writers Jill Colvin and Joey Cappelletti contributed to this report.


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