Remarks by President Trump in Listening Session with the National Association of Manufacturers
12:09 P.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT: We have some really good news today that’s really fantastic — these numbers. Today I’m delighted to welcome the National Association of Manufacturers to the White House. It’s a great group of people. I know many of them well.
And I want to thank your president and CEO, Jay Timmons, for being here with us today. Great job.
MR. TIMMONS: Thank you.
THE PRESIDENT: Great job, Jay.
My administration is working every day to make it easier for manufacturers to build, hire, and grow in America. We’re removing job-killing regulations and lifting the burdens on American industry like I would say have never been lifted before. We’ve done a lot of work over the last 60, 70 days, and I think you’re seeing some real production.
I think we can say this, Mike — like never before.
Earlier this week, I signed an executive order to end the war on coal. We had coal miners up at the office. It was an amazing scene. You had very tough, very strong, very powerful men that were crying actually; and they were crying with happiness. And produce more American energy and more American jobs, which is how I got elected in the first place.
We’ve created the task force in every agency to eliminate wasteful regulations. And today at 3:30 p.m., with the Department of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, who will be up, and we’re signing two very powerful executive orders. That will be something very important — very, very special. And that will be with Commerce.
One of the reasons we’re here today is to announce the extraordinary results of a new survey from the National Association of Manufacturers. Your survey shows that 93 percent of manufacturers now have a positive outlook on the future of their business in this country — 93 [percent]. And it was just a few months ago, 56 [percent]. That’s a slight difference. (Laughter.) That’s a slight difference. (Applause.)
That’s a 20-year, record high — highest it’s been in 20 years, and it’s going higher. Believe me, you could come back next month, Jay. (Laughter.) I don’t know how much higher it can go. And so I’m very proud of that, and we’re all very proud of that. And the manufacturers are really starting to invest big money, and a lot of things are happening. It’s a new surge in optimism, which is sweeping all across our land.
These survey results are a further vote of confidence in our plan to bring back jobs, lower taxes, and provide a level playing field for our workers. The manufacturing companies represent — and represented here today — are just an extraordinary group of people. They’re leaders. They’re brilliant in so many ways. The field has not been a level field. Jobs have been leaving our country, going to China and Mexico and lots of other places.
And you’ll be seeing what’s happening over the next few weeks. It should be very interesting for you to watch. As you know the President of China is coming to Florida. We’re having a meeting — big meeting — at Mar-a-Lago. We call it the Southern White House, which it actually is. It was originally built as the Southern White House, a lot of people don’t know. But it’s sort of strange how it got there.
But it’s going to be something I think very important, very special. I look very much forward to meeting him and the delegation, and we’ll see what happens. But I am very, very proud of what you’ve been able to do in a short period of time — just this little, short period of time, the optimism is so high. And I see the billions of dollars that are being invested by your people and your representatives in plant and equipment and jobs.
And I appreciate that, Jay, very much. Congratulations. You may want to say a few words.
MR. TIMMONS: Well, I do. And I want to reemphasize for the media here that this quarterly survey of our 14,000 members has been going on for 20 years. And to the point you made, this was the highest level of optimism that our manufacturers have expressed in 20 years.
THE PRESIDENT: That’s fantastic.
MR. TIMMONS: And the other statistic that I think you’ll find interesting is the right-track/wrong-track question that our manufacturers answered. Just the month before Inauguration Day, the right-track number was only 26 percent. Today it is over 60 percent. So that’s a huge growth, as well. And that’s because of the focus on taxes, regulations, infrastructure investment. We appreciate your commitment to investment in job creation and manufacturing. And we’re going to deliver.
THE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much, Jay. That’s really nice.
MR. TIMMONS: Thank you.
THE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much. Patricia, would you like to say something? Pretty outstanding what you’ve done.
MS. MILLER: Thank you. I appreciate being here today. I own a plastics manufacturing company in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. We’re a three-year entrepreneurial in growth phase with a 40-year legacy. It’s great to be part of manufacturing in the U.S.
THE PRESIDENT: That’s a really great job. You’ve done a great job. Really great.
MR. PARADOWSKI: Good morning, Mr. President. I’m Ed Paradowski, president of Apache Stainless Equipment. We’re in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin. We manufacture capital equipment out of stainless steel and other high alloys. We employ 175, and most of them are skilled trades people — some of the best skilled trades people in the state of Wisconsin. We are a 100 percent S Corp, and we would love to have you out in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin.
THE PRESIDENT: Well, I love the state of Wisconsin.
MR. PARADOWSKI: As do I.
THE PRESIDENT: There was a little bit of an upset. I don’t think — (laughter) — I don’t think — I thought we were going to do very well there. But people would — they could consider that a slight upset, right? But we don’t consider it that. Thank you. Very good.
MR. STAUB: Mr. President, good to see you again. We enjoyed having you at our facility back in September. I’m Steve Staub with Staub Manufacturing Solutions in Dayton, Ohio.
THE PRESIDENT: I remember.
MR. STAUB: And hopefully you got a chance to see the “First Day” video that we did with the National Association of Manufacturers.
THE PRESIDENT: I did. Thank you. I did. Great job. And you’ve done a great job.
MR. STAUB: Thank you.
THE PRESIDENT: Yes.
MR. EDDY: Good morning, Mr. President. My name is Joe Eddy. I’m the president and CEO of a company in northern West Virginia called Eagle Manufacturing. We’re 125 years old this year; a family-owned business. We manufacture products out of steel and plastic. We make over a thousand industrial safety and hazardous materials handling products. And I bring from West Virginia a major thank you for the work you’ve done for coal.
THE PRESIDENT: Great state. Great people. Really. We really opened it up. Nobody thought it would happen that fast. They thought maybe at the end of the four-year term, maybe I’d sign it — no. Nobody thought we were going to go that fast. And the people appreciate it.
MS. COPELAND: Good morning, Mr. President. I am Julie Copeland. I am CEO and co-owner with my sister of Arbill, a Philadelphia-based company that protects people in the workplace. We partner with manufacturers to make sure that no one gets hurt. We have products and services and technologies. And it’s a privilege to be here today. And we look forward to continuing —
THE PRESIDENT: Have you met these two guys? (Laughter.)
MR. WETHERINGTON: Thank you, Mr. President. Chuck Wetherington. I’m the President of BTE Technologies. We’re based in Baltimore, Maryland and Denver, Colorado. We’re a manufacturer of high-tech medical devices used in physical therapy and industrial rehab, and we also have a professional services business that focuses on workplace injury reduction. We are the safety corner here.
THE PRESIDENT: That’s very good.
MR. WETHERINGTON: And we work with large employers around the United States and Canada doing that kind of work.
THE PRESIDENT: And you’re starting to do really well.
MR. WETHERINGTONG: We are. Yes. Thank you.
THE PRESIDENT: That’s good. You know our great Vice President.
MR. GREENBLATT: My name is Drew Greenblatt. I’m the owner of Marlin Steel. We’re a steel factory, make wire baskets for the automotive industry and the pharmaceutical industry. We make everything in Baltimore City, Maryland. We import nothing. We use steel from Illinois, we use steel from Indiana. We’re thrilled with the policies that you are pursuing. We feel great optimism, and we’re thankful for those approaches you’re taking. Obviously — we’re 45 miles from where you’re sitting right now — we’d love for you to come visit us.
THE PRESIDENT: Okay, good. Well, we’re not finished yet, Drew. A lot of other things are happening, including — you haven’t seen this in 25 years. That’s great.
MR. RIORDAN: Mr. President, good morning. My name is Tom Riordan. I’m the CEO of Neenah Enterprises. We’re a casting and forging operation in Wisconsin — 145 years old. First products were plowshares back in the Civil War. Today most of our product are related to infrastructure in terms of street casting, sewer covers, and so on. The other half of our business is really tied to on/offload vehicles with folks like Caterpillar and John Deere. We’re very much dependent upon your policies moving forward.
THE PRESIDENT: Good job.
MR. MAGYARI: Nice to meet you. My name is Doug Magyari. I’m the CEO of IMMI, Inc. We’re a Troy, Michigan company, suburb of Detroit. And we’re very much a leading-edge research and development company on advanced technologies, and in particular, we’ve built the most advanced augmented reality and virtual reality glasses in the world. And it’s an extremely important technology that’s going to affect not only everybody at this table, but really every facet of our lives. And there’s military applications and all sorts of medical applications, as well as entertainment.
And it’s such an important technology that we’ve made a commitment to manufacture it here in the United States. And we really appreciate what you’re doing to help facilitate in making that happen.
THE PRESIDENT: We have a lot of plants going up now in Michigan that were never going to be there if I — if I didn’t win this election, those plants would never even think about going back. They were gone. We’re you thinking about getting out?
MR. MAGYARI: I wouldn’t abandon the United States under any circumstances. But Michigan, we definitely have had a rough go, and the things that you’re doing and a lot of initiatives are really bringing Michigan back.
THE PRESIDENT: Big progress in Michigan.
MS. BUCHWALD-WRIGHT: Hello. It’s nice to see you again. I’m Karen Buchwald-Wright. And I’m the president and CEO of a family business that manufactures natural gas compressors. We’re from Mt. Vernon, Ohio. And gas compressors are used in both the oil and gas industry, so I’m especially thankful that you have gotten the Keystone —
THE PRESIDENT: Very busy.
MS. BUCHWALD-WRIGHT: Yes, we are going to be.
THE PRESIDENT: You have to be. Big difference. That industry has changed over the last couple of months — actually, over the last couple of weeks, that industry has changed.
MS. BUCHWALD-WRIGHT: Yes. It’s great.
THE PRESIDENT: A lot of jobs.
MR. BARR: Good morning, Mr. President. I’m Matt Barr with Carolina Color. We manufacture colors for the plastics industry. We’re a family-owned business — we also celebrated our 50th anniversary this year, 120 employees. We’re in Delaware, Ohio, and we’re headquartered in Salisbury, North Carolina.
THE PRESIDENT: Nice to have you.
MS. JOHNSON. Good morning, Mr. President. I’m Kellie Johnson, president of ACE Clearwater Enterprises. It’s a 16-year-old family business — third generation. We’re a supplier to the aerospace and power generation industries. We build products out of metal. If it flies or is launched, our parts are on it. We employ 200 of the best men and women in our industry. And on behalf of all of them, thank you for what you’re doing.
And we would love to have you come and visit next time you’re in southern California. In fact, I’ll never forget my husband and I approaching you in the lobby of your golf course in Palos Verdes when the flag controversy was going on. And we respected your position and we are so proud that that flag is flying today. Thank you. It worked out well.
THE PRESIDENT: It worked out. That was a very good decision.
Thank you very much. Thank you, everybody. Thank you.
Q Any comment on Michael Flynn, Mr. President?
Q Are you looking forward to your visit with the Chinese President?
THE PRESIDENT: Yes, I am.
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