The Lead

Biden will travel to Michigan on Tuesday to support striking UAW workers

By: - September 22, 2023 5:23 pm

President Joe Biden tours the North American International Auto Show in Detroit on Sept. 14, 2022. Biden was joined on the tour by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow and U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell. (Andrew Roth | Michigan Advance)

President Joe Biden will travel to Michigan next week in a historic show of support for striking Ford, GM and Stellantis UAW workers.

“Tuesday, I’ll go to Michigan to join the picket line and stand in solidarity with the men and women of UAW as they fight for a fair share of the value they helped create. It’s time for a win-win agreement that keeps American auto manufacturing thriving with well-paid UAW jobs,” Biden wrote on social media Friday evening.

As UAW President Shawn Fain on Friday morning announced new strike targets at 38 GM and Stellantis auto suppliers in 20 states, he extended an invitation for Biden to join workers on the picket line. Several other leaders have come out to support workers, including U.S. Sen. John Fetterman (D-Pa.), U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), U.S. Sen. Gary Peters (D-Bloomfield Twp.), U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

News of Biden’s planned trip was first reported by the Washington Post.

Biden’s visit is slated to be one day before former President Donald Trump is set to come to Michigan to meet with workers, a state he lost to Biden in 2020. Trump said he will skip the second night of the 2024 GOP presidential debate to do so.

“Joe Biden’s trip to Michigan is nothing more than a cheap photo op as he finds himself between a rock and a political hard place,” Trump campaign senior adviser Jason Miller said in a statement criticizing Biden’s push for electric vehicles. “… Joe Biden cares more about his extremist liberal base than he does about auto workers in Michigan or anywhere else in the United States.”

However, Fain made it clear he does not welcome Trump’s visit.

“Every fiber of our union is being poured into fighting the billionaire class and an economy that enriches people like Donald Trump at the expense of workers,” Fain said earlier this week. “We can’t keep electing billionaires and millionaires that don’t have any understanding what it is like to live paycheck to paycheck and struggle to get by and expecting them to solve the problems of the working class.”

The UAW has not endorsed in the 2024 presidential election.

This article was updated at 7:01 p.m. Sept. 22, 2023 to add comment from former President Trump’s spokesperson.

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