- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 10, 2020

President Trump touted his effort to bring manufacturing jobs back to Michigan during a campaign rally Thursday, where his supporters gathered in mass outside an airport hanger without masks or social distancing.

The president took to the podium with Air Force One as his backdrop, similar to how he campaigned in 2016, where he made stops across the country in his personal jet — pre-COVID-19.

Joe Biden devoted his career to offshoring Michigan jobs, outsourcing Michigan factories,” Mr. Trump said. “We have changed it around.”

Manufacturing jobs have steadily increased over the past 10 years in the state, with the exception of last year, where there was a dip beginning in the summer of 2019, according to the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics.

The president told the swing state voters that his administration’s record on trade negotiations has even gained praise from his rival Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, who told CNN earlier on Thursday that the USMCA was a better trade deal than NAFTA.

Mr. Trump renegotiated the U.S., Mexico, and Canada trade agreement during his first administration — a promise he had made while campaigning in 2016, often railing against NAFTA, saying it sent manufacturing jobs from states like Michigan and Wisconsin overseas. Both are battleground states the president won by less than 1% in 2016.

Mr. Biden, as a senator from Delaware, voted for NAFTA in 1993. As vice president, Mr. Biden vowed to renegotiate NAFTA alongside President Obama, but that never happened.

He refused to give Mr. Trump credit for the new deal during his CNN appearance, but Mr. Biden acknowledged the updated trade agreement is better than the old one.

Mr. Trump told his supporters he wanted that question posed to Mr. Biden again and again.

Joe Biden surrendered your jobs to China and now he wants to surrender our country to the violent left-wing mob,” the president told the crowd, citing violent rioting that has plagued some Democratic cities across the nation since June.

“If Biden wins, China wins. If Biden wins, the mob wins,” he added. “But I wouldn’t worry about it because he’s not winning.”

Mr. Trump won Michigan by 10,704 votes in 2016 and is trying to keep it red in November.

The Real Clear Politics polling average shows Mr. Biden leading Mr. Trump by about four points in the key swing state.

The president took swings at his competitor, calling him ‘Joe Hidin’ in reference to the Democratic nominee’s mostly virtual campaign due to the COVID-19 pandemic. He said he has the privilege of running against the worst presidential candidate in history.

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