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I traveled to Lordstown, Ohio, this summer to meet former General Motors workers who lost their jobs when the auto plant there shut down after 52 years. The company announced the shutdown and then, shortly after, announced plans to build a factory in Mexico. Nearly 1,500 jobs were lost when the plant closed. The workers there told me that these were good jobs that provided family-sustaining incomes. And now they’re gone.
Americans aren’t angry for imaginary reasons; they’re angry because of experiences like this. Workers in this country have been wronged, and the American dream no longer feels in reach.
We are in desperate need of what I call a new economic patriotism — a worker-centered plan to make America a manufacturing superpower again and revive factory towns hurt by deindustrialization. At the forefront of this effort is the revival of the steel industry.
Demand for steel is so high in the U.S. that we are the world’s largest importer of the metal, importing roughly three times more than we produce. From electrical steel in car motors, emergency generators and power transformers,