UAW president shows support for U.S. plan to explore import duties
Williams: The U.S. should have been looking at imports “a long, long time ago.” Photo credit: REUTERS
DETROIT — UAW President Dennis Williams is supportive of the Trump administration’s efforts to launch a national security investigation into car and truck imports that could lead to new U.S. tariffs.
The union leader, who has been critical of President Donald Trump, said the U.S. has been “a dumping ground for a lot of countries at a very low cost.”
“I thought we should be looking at imports a long, long time ago,” he said, adding that the union continues to evaluate how such moves would impact workers in the U.S.
Williams said he is “not 100 percent behind it” because he doesn’t know all the repercussions, which could take years to play out.
Williams, a major supporter of Hillary Clinton, the Democratic nominee for president in 2016, did not go as far as to fully endorse Trump. He said the union specifically agrees with the administration on trade, not other issues.
“When he is working within the best interests of working men and women in this country on trade and things that really impact the working class, then we will support him,” Williams said, agreeing the Trump administration’s stance on trade is more aligned with the union’s than any other in recent years.
If administration officials, Williams said, “do what they say they’re going to do,” then the union will be there to support Trump on that issue.
Williams, who will retire next month after a four-year term leading the UAW, said he does not agree with the administration’s plans to roll back federal fuel economy standards.