President Trump is making manufacturing great again, and he has 171,000 reasons to prove it.
That’s the number of manufacturing jobs the United States added in the first year of Donald Trump’s administration, compared to a loss of 16,000 in the last year of the Obama administration.
“Factories nationwide have added 171,000 jobs so far in 2017 — a rebound from the previous year when factories shed 16,000 jobs,” a December article from NPR, always known for it’s inveterate fairness to the Trump administration, read.
In fact, NPR was so fair about it that it gave the credit to … pretty much everything else aside from the Trump administration.
“Trump has promised to lead a renaissance in American manufacturing,” the article continued. “The sector has generally been adding jobs since 2010, although the strength of export-oriented factories is strongly tied to what’s happening in the global economy.”
So let’s get this straight: Factory jobs were trending downward, but the first year of the Trump administration saw them skyrocket. But that’s all the global economy, and manufacturing has “generally” been adding jobs.
If Donald Trump literally invented an Iron Man-like suit that allowed him to fly up in the sky and intercept a North Korean ICBM as it was about to hit Washington, D.C., one gets the feeling NPR would run a paean to the company that manufactured the super-light material the suit was made out of and note that the company had been founded during the Obama administration.
There was also the issue of wage growth, but the administration seems to think it can get that under control.
“Wages are rising, but they’re not rising as fast as I believe they really should in order to attract the workers that they need,” Tom Maher, who runs a Manpower temping agency in Ohio, told NPR in early December. “Virtually every manufacturer in the area has a help-wanted sign outside their window.”
However, a help-wanted sign in every window is a good thing, and Kevin Hassett, chairman of the president’s Council of Economic Advisers, says that he thinks the recently passed Republican tax bill will help significantly.
“Wage growth was not as strong as we’d like to see it,” Hassett said during the same panel discussion Maher spoke on. “We fully expect that that’s going to accelerate next year if the tax bill passes.”
And it did. As Hassett noted, the rest of the fundamentals are good.
“We’re at that point in the cycle where the market is tight enough that it’s really rewarding everybody,” he said. “If we could sustain growth at this level for another couple of years then the amount of progress we could make on income inequality and wage growth for middle America would be maybe even unprecedented.”
And it’s not just manufacturing jobs, either. As the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, the U.S. added 148,000 jobs in December and the unemployment rate held at a 17-year-low.
Talk about a very merry Christmas — especially for a middle America that saw itself being virtually ignored during the Obama administration.
So let’s give credit where credit is due.