President Obama visits Lorain, Ohio today-- the same place that the Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) visited in 2010
In October, 2010, the Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) brought its "Keep it Made in America" town hall tour to the Lorain County Community College, in Lorain, Ohio.
AAM's town hall meeting included a speech by Congresswoman Betty Sutton (D-OH), as well as a panel discussion with David McCall, District 1 Director, United Steelworkers; Larry Taylor, Lorain Plant Manager, U.S. Steel; and, Kelly Zelesnik, Dean of Engineering Technologies, Lorain County Community College.
At the Town Hall, Rep. Sutton said: "Manufacturing is key to our economy, the backbone...It supports the American middle class...Manufacturing is changing, but it's critical that we make things in this country...China's undervalued currency and illegal subsidies are hurting U.S. manufacturers...We need to fix our trade laws."
A year-and-a-half later, President Obama is visiting the same community college. As Stephen Koff reports in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the president is speaking at Lorain County Community College today to highlight his job training initiatives:
"Obama will use a visit Wednesday to Lorain County Community College to sharply contrast his efforts to help job-seekers in a state hit hard by the recession with that of Republicans, which the White House says would inflict a hardship on Ohioans looking for work. ... Obama is unlikely to mention Mitt Romney, his presumptive Republican opponent in November. But the trip's backdrop, and the president's pitch to blue-collar workers in and around Elyria, is clear."
In January, the president gave a State of the Union speech that went heavy on manufacturing, something that AAM found encouraging. President Obama has been citing the key role that manufacturing plays in driving the U.S. economy, and it's helpful that he is now focused on boosting skills and training for young Americans who want to work with their hands as well as with their minds.
The United States lags behind the rest of the industrialized world in preparing our workforce for highly skilled careers in manufacturing, something that needs to be rectified.
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