Lucerne International CEO Mary Buchzeiger whole-heartedly supported Donald Trump in 2016. As a business owner, she felt as though he was on her side. Now that his newly-imposed China tariffs are actually an imminent thing, Buchzeiger’s business and employees’ jobs are at stake. She is upset and feels betrayed. We aren’t giving her any sympathy over here.
If only she had seen Trump for what he was before she voted, huh? It’s not as if she wasn’t warned by hundreds of people that a Trump presidency wouldn’t be good for anyone. She only has herself to blame.
She explained in an editorial at Crain’s Detroit Business,
My company, Lucerne International, makes cast, stamped and forged components and assemblies for the automotive and heavy truck industries. Our largest contract is for the Jeep Wrangler. As one of the world’s only companies producing Class-A forgings, we make the door, hood, windshield and tailgate hinges that sit outside Wranglers like polished jewels. We’re damn proud of this work. It starts overseas — we have seven plants in Asia, where the hinges are manufactured. They are shipped to the Lucerne plant outside Detroit, inspected, repackaged and sent to another auto supplier for assembly before being shipped to Toledo for installation on the vehicle. That’s a supply chain: Thousands of American jobs. Billions of American dollars. And it’s all in danger.
Buchzeiger realizes that the tariffs imposed upon China aluminum and steel will affect her company directly. China will redistribute the cost of the higher tariffs onto the consumer, which is Lucerne. Around 90 percent of her company’s products will be affected and she knows that the price will cause her company to fold. Her profit margins will be zilch.
She goes on to question Trump’s knowledge of how this will affect manufacturing jobs in America – the very jobs he says he is trying to protect by imposing the tariffs. She doesn’t believe he comprehends the exact result of his actions, but her tone suggests that she still supports him. She makes it seem as though a little bit of education would make him realize the error of his ways.
Her optimism is only setting her up for more disappointment.