Former President Donald Trump will skip the second Republican primary debate on September 27, 2023, to deliver a speech to auto workers in Detroit, his campaign announced on Tuesday.
This move by Trip comes during an ongoing strike by the United Auto Workers (UAW) against Ford Motor Co., General Motors Co., and Stellantis. The Trump campaign appears to be intent on reaching out to these individuals with an event hosting 500 of them.
Trump’s team wrote:
“Former President Donald J. Trump is planning to travel to Detroit on the day of the next Republican primary debate, according to two Trump advisers with knowledge of the plans, injecting himself into the labor dispute between striking autoworkers and the nation’s leading auto manufacturers.
The trip, which will include a prime-time speech before current and former union members, is the second consecutive primary debate that Mr. Trump is skipping to instead hold his own counterprogramming. He sat for an interview with the former Fox News host Tucker Carlson that posted online during the first G.O.P. presidential debate in August.
The decision to go to Michigan just days after the United Auto Workers went on strike shows the extent to which Mr. Trump wants to be seen as looking past his primary rivals — and the reality that both he and his political apparatus are already focused on the possibility of a rematch with President Biden.”
Biden lashed out at the former president, accusing him of “selling out” the industry when he was president.
Ammar Moussa, a press officer for Mr. Biden’s campaign, said in a statement, “Donald Trump is going to Michigan next week to lie to Michigan workers and pretend he didn’t spend his entire failed presidency selling them out at every turn.”
The former president, during an interview on NBC, noted that the auto workers “are being sold down the river by their leadership, and their leadership should support Trump.”
EXCLUSIVE: Ahead of the UAW strike, Kristen Welker asked fmr. Pres. Trump whose side he's on in negotiations.
Trump: “I’m on the side of making our country great. … The auto workers are being sold down the river by their leadership, and their leadership should endorse Trump.” pic.twitter.com/a8UDVvwFm5
— Meet the Press (@MeetThePress) September 15, 2023