President's Autoworker Meetings: A Clash in Detroit!

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  • Source: Wayne Dupree
  • 09/23/2023
President Biden has recently confirmed his acceptance of the United Auto Workers' invitation to join striking workers on the picket line. This announcement was made on social media, following initial hesitation from the White House regarding the invitation.

Critics have raised concerns about President Biden's level of support for striking autoworkers, despite his claims of being one of the most pro-union presidents in recent history.


On Friday, the president announced his intention to hold a meeting with autoworkers on Tuesday. This meeting is scheduled to take place one day prior to former President Donald Trump's planned engagement with the same group of individuals in Detroit.

On X, Mr. Biden expressed his intention to travel to Michigan in order to participate in a picket line. His purpose is to demonstrate his support and solidarity with the members of the United Automobile Workers (UAW) union. The UAW is currently engaged in a struggle to secure a fair portion of the value that they have contributed to creating.

The Trump campaign issued a statement criticizing Mr. Biden's visit, characterizing it as merely a superficial photo opportunity. 

The significance of his visit on Tuesday is contingent upon his decision to withdraw the EV Mandate and disavow the Green New Deal. However, it is unlikely that Biden will take these actions due to his allegiance to the Radical Left Eco-Loons in California. According to the statement, it is suggested that Joe Biden prioritizes his extremist liberal base over the welfare of auto workers in Michigan and across the United States. 

On Friday, UAW President Shawn Fain extended an invitation to Mr. Biden to join the picket line. This invitation caused Mr. Biden's aides to hesitate.

According to White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, the president expressed his gratitude to Shawn Fain for extending an invitation and including him in the gathering of the UAW's family and friends. This statement was made by Jean-Pierre during a press briefing at the White House, which took place a few hours prior to President Biden's social media post.

On Friday, the strike reached its second week.

On Wednesday, Mr. Trump had made prior arrangements to engage in discussions with autoworkers who were participating in a strike in Detroit. Instead of participating in a debate with his fellow contenders for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, he has chosen to prioritize a visit.

Donald Trump, the leading candidate in the nomination race, has garnered significant backing from blue-collar workers, despite not receiving support from union leaders.

A radio ad is currently being aired by the Trump campaign in Detroit and Toledo, Ohio. The ad aims to express appreciation for autoworkers and emphasizes the former president's consistent support for them.

Following Mr. Biden's recent announcement on X, the White House promptly disclosed an amended travel itinerary for the president, which now includes a visit to Michigan as the initial destination on his upcoming trip to California and Arizona.

On Wednesday, he will be present in the San Francisco Bay Area for a campaign reception. The purpose of this event is to gather support and engage with the local community. Additionally, on Thursday, he will be in the Phoenix area to deliver remarks that pay tribute to the late Senator John McCain. This speech aims to honor Senator McCain's legacy and contributions. Furthermore, he will also attend another campaign reception during his time in the Phoenix area. This reception serves as an opportunity to connect with supporters and further promote his campaign. 

After dispatching acting Labor Secretary Julie Su and White House senior adviser Gene Sperling to Detroit to assist in reaching a resolution, Mr. Biden received an invitation from Mr. Fain to join his workers on the picket line.

On Friday, the United Automobile Workers (UAW) union decided to escalate their strike by extending it to include 38 parts distribution centers located in 20 different states. The primary focus of this expanded walkout is on Stellantis and General Motors, two of the Big Three automakers.

According to Mr. Fain, the strike that has been escalating will not extend to Ford. He emphasized that Ford is committed to reaching a mutually beneficial agreement.

In a video message on Friday, Mr. Fain stated that GM and Stellantis are currently at a significant distance from reaching a deal.

Stellantis is a conglomerate with Italian-American roots that holds ownership over several prominent automotive brands. These include Chrysler, Dodge, RAM, Jeep, as well as a selection of European brands such as Fiat, Peugeot, Citroen, and Alfa Romeo.

According to the speaker, a strike is scheduled to take place at noon Eastern today at all parts distribution centers affiliated with General Motors and Stellantis. The decision has been made to temporarily suspend parts distribution operations until both companies involved demonstrate a reasonable and rational approach by presenting a substantial and meaningful proposal during negotiations.

The potential consequences of the strike expansion on dealerships' repair services, which are considered the most lucrative aspect of their operations, may pose challenges to their ability to carry out necessary repairs.

The number of UAW members involved in the recent strike has increased with the announcement of new strike targets. As of Friday, there are now over 5,600 UAW members who are participating in the strike, bringing the total number of workers on the picket line to 18,300. However, it is important to note that this figure represents only a small fraction of the union's overall workforce, which consists of approximately 150,000 workers.

The decision to spare Ford from the escalated strike by the United Auto Workers (UAW) has generated optimism, suggesting that negotiators are making headway in their discussions.

In a statement released on Friday, Ford expressed their commitment to collaborating with the UAW (United Automobile Workers) in order to achieve a mutually beneficial agreement. Ford emphasized their intention to provide their workforce with appropriate recognition and compensation, while also ensuring that the company can make strategic investments to foster a thriving and expanding future. Despite the advancements we have made in certain domains, there remain substantial disparities that need to be addressed regarding the fundamental economic matters. Ultimately, the various issues at hand are interconnected and require a comprehensive agreement that promotes the collective success of all parties involved.


The union led by Mr. Fain is advocating for several key demands. These include wage increases totaling 36% over a span of four years, a reduction in the standard workweek to 32 hours, with additional compensation for any overtime worked. Furthermore, they are seeking the reinstatement of retiree health benefits, the implementation of profit sharing, the restoration of defined-benefit pensions for all employees, and the inclusion of cost of living adjustments. The statement suggests that the speaker believes that workers should receive a larger portion of the substantial profits generated by automakers.

The three carmakers have increased their wage proposals to a range of 17.5% to 20%, in addition to offering substantial one-time payments and additional time off. However, the workers have expressed their opposition to a 32-hour workweek and the reinstatement of retirement benefits for new employees. These benefits were previously reduced when the automakers were on the verge of bankruptcy in 2007. The workers argue that implementing these changes would put them at a disadvantage compared to nonunion companies, impacting their competitiveness.


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