Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Biden to walk picket line and Trump to address auto workers, a UAW strike update

I told my readers to "Stay tuned" at the end of Writers Guild reaches tentative agreement with studios, as "the UAW strike has expanded and both President Biden and the former guy are planning on getting involved, if only for photo opportunities." Fox 2 Detroit expanded on that in yesterday's Biden, Trump expected to visit striking UAW members this week.

Both President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump are planning to visit Michigan this week to talk with UAW members who are on strike.
Susan Tompor at the Detroit Free Press adds more as it explains https://www.freep.com/story/money/personal-finance/susan-tompor/2023/09/26/biden-and-trump-visits-to-michigan-prove-uaw-strike-matters-to-economy/70960549007/.
Biden's trip Tuesday is expected to be the historic appearance by a president on a picket line, according to historians.

On Wednesday, Trump is scheduled to deliver a prime-time evening speech in Clinton Township to an audience of autoworkers and other union members. Trump has repeatedly said on social media that autoworkers should reject electric vehicles, arguing that they will be made outside the U.S. and UAW members will lose jobs.

Both the GOP and Democratic front-runners are seeking the support of rank-and-file UAW members in the upcoming presidential race.
While Democratic presidents and union members have a long history of mutual support, Biden walking a picket line is unprecedented.
[Cornell University's Art] Wheaton said U.S. presidents have typically avoided all picket lines. The U.S. Secret Service, he said, most likely doesn't want a president to be walking a picket line because the action there can be so unpredictable and notoriously difficult to control.

And a president, Wheaton said, wants to be neutral and not appear to be picking sides in a labor dispute, favoring the union over the corporation.

"But President Biden has been very open that he stands with the UAW," Wheaton said, "so that's a refreshing change and should not be unexpected by anyone in politics."

"He claims to be the most union president at least in our generation so we should not be shocked that he wants to support the union in the way he can."
Tompor packed a lot of political and economic analysis in her commentary, including the increasing popularity of unions and a history of presidents working with the UAW. Read it before it goes behind a paywall.

Returning to video, MSNBC updated the story this morning when it uploaded Biden set to join UAW picket line in Michigan.

President Biden is set to join striking auto workers on the picket lines Tuesday in Michigan.
It may be the first time a sitting president has walked a picket line, but it won't be the first time for Biden, who did so before he was president.

The White House reporter for the Associated Press mentioned electric vehicles (EVs) as an issue between the UAW and automakers, something Tompor also explored in her article. She mentioned that it's become a campaign issue as well. Yahoo Finance explored Why EVs are becoming politicized amid UAW strikes.

President Biden is set to join the United Auto Workers' strikes this week to show support for union workers, shortly before Former President Donald Trump joins picket lines in Detroit, skipping out on the second GOP debate. One of the issues at the center of the strike is EV production and what it means for the future of auto workers. Biden's policy to have electric vehicles account for 50% of all new auto sales by 2030 has been lauded by Trump, among other Republicans, over automation fears that could eliminate jobs and the auto parts needed for assembly. Yahoo Finance Senior Reporter Rick Newman joins to discuss what is factual and what is political strategy from both sides of the aisle.
I'm recycling my comments from UAW goes on strike against Detroit's Big Three automakers as my reaction.
[T]he transition to EVs...is going more slowly than hoped, and...the strike is likely to impede that technological change even more. I'm not happy about that, as I'm in favor of EVs. However, sustainability is a balancing act, which is why I wrote "May people not suffer so that the planet and profit thrive" on Labor Day. Here's to maintaining that balance.
I'll have more on the strike, maybe later this week, in between the News &Documentary Emmy Awards, a possible government shutdown, and maybe the second Republican debate. I'm just not feeling that last one this cycle, so I might skip it. In any event, stay tuned.

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