The Rust Belt is alive with glimmers of hope as employees of the Carrier Corp. plant in Indianapolis come to grips with the greatest of all Christmas presents — the jobs they were told were heading for Mexico are not going there any more.
On Wednesday, Carrier announced that after negotiations with President-elect Donald Trump, “nearly 1,000” jobs would stay. A formal announcement about the deal will be made Thursday in Indianapolis when Trump and Vice president-elect Mike Pence travel to the plant.
Trump had tweeted on Thanksgiving Day that he was working with Carrier to preserve the jobs, but the announcement this week that a deal had been concluded led to exuberance replacing resignation for the workers involved.
— FOX & Friends (@foxandfriends) November 30, 2016
Robin Maynard, a 24-year-veteran of Carrier, expressed his views Wednesday on Fox and Friends.
“I would like to tell him thank you for going out of your way and taking your time away from your family, working on the Carrier and employees’ deal,” Maynard stated. “Sticking to your word and going to bat for all of us at Carrier and keeping our jobs here. I’d like to thank him and Mike Pence for doing it so quickly.”
Maynard could not believe the speed at which a deal was reached.
“I didn’t expect an announcement for three or four weeks, and we’re what? Two days from the meeting with them, and they’ve already made their announcement. So I’m very excited about it and would like to thank both of them personally and hopefully shake their hands,” he said.
The Carrier announcement sent ripples beyond America’s manufacturing heartland.
— Trump Super PAC (@TrumpSuperPAC) November 30, 2016
I’m impressed that Trump already saved American Jobs by making a deal with carrier that they should stay in the USA!
— GOP Millennial (@MillennialFla) November 30, 2016
Carrier announces they have reached an agreement with President-Elect Donald Trump, they will keep jobs in America! MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN
— Makada 🇺🇸 (@_Makada_) November 30, 2016
Some workers said they doubted much would happen, even after Trump’s Thanksgiving Day announcement that he was working n their behalf.
“I’ve got 13 years in, and I don’t really want to start back over. I’ve got a baby on the way, and you know, it’s a blessing,” said Dominique Anthony.
“I thought it was a lie at first. I was excited. I finally looked at the news and got the OK about it. … I feel sorry for some of the guys who left, but everything is good. Like I said, it’s a blessing. A great Christmas present.”
Trump’s action impressed one notable doubter — Chuck Jones, president of United Steelworkers Local 1999, which represents the workers at the plant.
“He pulled it off. And my plan when I talk to him tomorrow is to say, ‘Hey, I’ve been bashing you pretty good, but I’m gonna give you your credit. You did what you said you were going to do, and I appreciate it,” he said.
“Now is it going to turn me into a big Donald Trump fan? Probably not, but the man deserves the credit for what he did for these Carrier folks. Without a doubt,” Jones said.
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