‘We are the magic wand,’ former GM worker of 40 years tells Trump

Posted at 10:56 AM, Nov 28, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-28 13:12:23-05

A former General Motors worker of 40 years said Wednesday President Donald Trump’s recent statements about the company’s decision to close plants and lay off workers “offensive.”

“We are the magic wand. We are the people that kept GM here all that time,” Carmela Denno told CNN’s Poppy Harlow on “Newsroom.”

Just hours after GM announced Monday it would slash its workforce and shut production at five North American facilities in Ohio, Michigan, Maryland and Ontario, Canada, Trump bragged that his administration had “found the magic wand” for manufacturing and claimed that the number of companies making products in the US is “actually going to be increasing.”

“I feel we kept GM here, not any president,” Denno said.

Denno, who had recently retired from the Lordstown, Ohio, plant and voted for Trump in 2016, said she is worried for family members and other workers in the community who will be facing layoffs or transfers.

“Our jobs need to stay here. These people are the ones that will keep the economy in this area alive. With no jobs, how can they do that?”

Trump’s promise to help auto workers and keep manufacturing jobs in the US was a big part of his presidential campaign, but the automaker’s announcement means some 8,000 salaried employees and 6,000 hourly workers will either lose their jobs or be reassigned to other plants, with the potential of more cuts to come.

Denno described a community built around the plant where her niece and niece’s husband still work.

“It’s a sad day. People are going to be losing benefits. It is going to affect the whole tri-county area around us,” she said.