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Trump To Tour Whirlpool in Clyde, Give Speech Before Bratenahl Fundraiser

Gov. Mike DeWine has delayed Thursday's coronavirus briefing due to President Donald Trump's trip to Northern Ohio, which includes a tour of the Whirlpool manufacturing plant in Clyde and a speech before heading to a high-dollar fundraiser in Bratenahl.

DeWine will instead address the media Friday afternoon on the virus. At his most recent briefing, DeWine was asked if he was concerned about the fundraiser due to the continuing pandemic.

“I’m always concerned any time anybody gets together,” DeWine said. “If that is an inside event – I don't even know if it's an inside event or an outside event. I think it's the Shoreby Club. I just don't know. We always would worry, but I’m, you know, going to assume they’re taking very, very, very good precautions.”

Trump's director of trade and manufacturing policy, Peter Navarro, said the Whirlpool plant in Sandusky County is a success story.

“The emphasis of the visit will be the triumph of the Trump trade and tariff policies and the president will take a broad overview,” Navarro said Wednesday. “The speech should be very, very worthwhile.”

Whirlpool won cases against Korean companies LG and Samsung, Navarro said, which were placing washers from Mexico for sale in the U.S. market.

“The Koreans, instead of playing by the rules [paying tariffs], simply moved their production to Thailand and Vietnam,” Navarro said. “These are practices known as country hopping and serial dumping. They are absolutely against the rules of the international trade order.”

In 2018, Whirlpool won a global safeguards case and a 50 percent tariff for international competitors that stuck, Navarro said.

Coming out of the pandemic, the country is likely to see high unemployment from airlines, hospitality and leisure sectors, he added.

"The best way to make sure they have work is in manufacturing because those jobs not only pay well, they have their own multiplier effects to create different kinds of service sector jobs," Navarro said.

A finalized schedule for Trump's visit was not available, though the tour is expected to take place in the late afternoon.

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