Trump plans to address auto workers in Detroit during second GOP debate

Former president Donald Trump plans to give a speech to union workers on the day of the second Republican presidential primary debate, according to an adviser to Trump involved in the planning who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly.

The Republican front-runner skipped the first Republican debate in late August, choosing instead to tape an interview with former Fox News host Tucker Carlson that aired at the same time as the debate.

While other Republican candidates participate in the Sept. 27 event in California, Trump instead plans to speak to more than 500 autoworkers, plumbers, electricians and pipe-fitters, the adviser said. The group is likely to include workers from the United Auto Workers union that is striking against the Big Three automakers in the country’s Rust Belt. The Trump adviser added that it is unclear whether the former president will visit the strike line.

The New York Times first reported the Detroit address.

Democrats urge Biden to join UAW picket line as Trump plans Detroit trip

Trump’s campaign also created a radio ad, to run on sports- and rock-themed stations in Detroit and Toledo, meant to present him as on the side of striking autoworkers, the adviser said.

The speech to striking workers is a complicated needle for Trump to thread, given his administration enacted policies detested by organized labor, weakened the National Labor Relations Board and approved legislation centered on lower corporate taxes. On Truth Social, Trump posted Friday that pushing to build electric cars is a “disaster for both the United Auto Workers and the American Consumer.” He added: “If this happens, the United Auto workers will be wiped out, along with all other auto workers in the United States.”

The former president has also slammed UAW President Shawn Fain, saying on NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday that Fain is failing the striking workers.

“The auto workers are being sold down the river by their leadership,” Trump said.

This is a developing story and will be updated.

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