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Donald Trump Using 1,300 Philly Layoffs As Campaign Fodder
Back in January, I broke a sad news story about Cardone Industries announcing more than 1,300 layoffs, as the company plans to ship jobs from Northeast Philly to Matamoros, Mexico. I felt terribly for the people losing their jobs and hoped it would spark a conversation about the death of the middle class in Philly and Corporate America’s lust for cheap labor. Sure, it got a few comments on the Philly Mag Facebook page but no politician said a peep — until Saturday when it became a talking point in the 2016 presidential election.
None other than Republican front-runner Donald J. Trump called out Cardone Industries for the layoffs, saying on his Facebook page: “I am the ONLY one who can fix this! We need to keep jobs- here in AMERICA!” So far, it’s got 66,000 likes, nearly 7,000 comments and 12,000 shares.
Trump has been telling anybody who will listen that he’s the best candidate to stop companies from shipping jobs overseas. How exactly will he do that? Can he magically get manufacturers to stop their labor price wars, and get consumers to stop being so price-conscious? I reached out to his campaign but didn’t immediately hear back. We’ll keep you posted.
Trump’s son Eric also tweeted about the Philly situation:
— Eric Trump (@EricTrump) February 13, 2016
Trump’s Facebook message came on Saturday, after a viral video began circulating the Internet showing the exact moment when 1,400 workers from Carrier Corp. in Indiana found out their jobs were being shipped to Monterrey, Mexico. It’s heart-wrenching, especially when the robot-esq corporate boss tells workers: “Relocating our operations to Monterrey will allow us to maintain high levels of product quality” and then says that, in the interim, “we must remain committed to manufacturing the same high-quality products” One guy in the crowd replied: “Yeah, fuck you!” Good for him.
Here’s a little bit more on the Philly layoffs. Cardone Industries is an auto parts re-manufacturer, meaning it re-engineers parts for cars and trucks to fix problems or get them to work with different makes or models. The company is moving its brakes division to Mexico, meaning jobs will be eliminated at the company’s facilities at 5501 Whitaker Avenue and 5670 Rising Sun Avenue, both in lower Northeast Philadelphia.
A Cardone spokesperson told me back in January that despite the layoffs, the company is staying put: “Cardone is headquartered in Philadelphia and will always be headquartered in Philadelphia. It’s the nerve center of the company’s operations.”