Thousands Tell President Trump to Safeguard American-made Steel and Aluminum

Elizabeth Brotherton-Bunch

Elizabeth Brotherton-Bunch Digital Media Director, Alliance for American Manufacturing

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters on Monday that the Commerce Department “should” release the findings of its national security investigation into steel imports “later this week.”

But barring an unexpected Friday afternoon news dump, it looks like we’re going to have to wait a little longer to see what recommendations the department will have for President Trump in the Section 232 investigation.

In the meantime, Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) supporters are making their voices heard. Nearly 4,000 people already have written to President Trump and their Members of Congress to urge them to “utilize all available tools — including the Section 232 remedy — to protect America’s economic and national security.”

And on Friday, AAM ran a full-page ad in the Washington Post thanking the president for his promise to stand with American steelworkers — and urging him to deliver a comprehensive Section 232 action.

As U.S. Army Brigadier Gen. John Adams (Ret.) outlined to AAM supporters earlier this week, dumped steel and aluminum imports from countries like Russia and China are putting America at risk.

We need both steel and aluminum for both our national defense needs and our critical infrastructure. But dumped imports from China and Russia have led to dozens of plant closures and tens of thousands of layoffs. Entire industries are threatened.

If America loses its ability to make steel or aluminum, we’ll have to rely on China and Russia for the materials needed to build everything from fighter jets and battleships to energy transformers and bridges.

Trump has promised to stand with steel and aluminum workers. With the steel import investigation wrapping up (and findings in the Section 232 aluminum case also expected soon) now is the time to make good on his word.

As AAM’s own Scott Paul noted, the voters who put Trump in office are watching very closely to see if the president makes good on his word to take on unfair trade. This is an opportunity he shouldn’t pass up.

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Reposted from AAM.

Posted In: Allied Approaches, From Alliance for American Manufacturing

Union Matters

Freight can’t wait

From the USW

From tumbledown bridges to decrepit roads and failing water systems, crumbling infrastructure undermines America’s safety and prosperity. In coming weeks, Union Matters will delve into this neglect and the urgent need for a rebuilding campaign that creates jobs, fuels economic growth and revitalizes communities.

A freight train hauling lumber and nylon manufacturing chemicals derailed, caught fire and caused a 108-year-old bridge to collapse in Tempe, Ariz., this week, in the second accident on the same bridge within a month.

The bridge was damaged after the first incident, according to Union Pacific railroad that owns the rail bridge, and re-opened two days later. 

The official cause of the derailments is still under investigation, but it remains clear that the failure to modernize and maintain America’s railroad infrastructure is dangerous. 

In 2019, 499 trains that derailed were found to have defective or broken track, roadbed or structures, according to the Federal Railroad Administration’s database of safety analysis.

While railroad workers’ unions have called for increased safety improvements, rail companies have also used technology and automation as an excuse to downsize their work forces.

For example, rail companies have implemented a cost-saving measure known as Precision Scheduled Railroading (PSR), which has resulted in mass layoffs and shoddy safety protocols. 

Though privately-owned railroads have spent significantly to upgrade large, Class I trains, regional Class II trains and local, short-line Class III trains that carry important goods for farmers and businesses still rely on state and local funds for improvements. 

But cash-strapped states struggle to adequately inspect new technologies and fund safety improvements, and repairing or replacing the aging track and rail bridges will require significant public investment.

A true infrastructure commitment will not only strengthen the country’s railroad networks and increase U.S. global economic competitiveness. It will also create millions of family-sustaining jobs needed to inspect, repair and manufacture new parts for mass transit systems, all while helping to prevent future disasters.

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There is Dignity in All Work

There is Dignity in All Work