DNC Chair Tom Perez, Lt. Gov Garlin Gilchrist, and Rep. Andy Levin Host Press Call on Economy and Racial Disparities in Michigan

“Friday’s jobs report actually was devastating for working people”

Today, DNC Chair Tom Perez joined Michigan Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist and Representative Andy Levin for a press call to discuss the May jobs report and an unemployment crisis that has been exacerbated because of Trump’s failed coronavirus response and broken promises to Michigan. They also discussed Trump’s failure to stand up to China and the state of the Trump economy for Michiganders.

The May jobs report indicated that Americans are still facing the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. Nationally, more than one-fourth of the American workforce has now filed for unemployment insurance, and the death toll from the coronavirus in the United States is over 110,000. New polling from the DNC indicates that an overwhelming majority of voters from six key battleground states, including Michigan, give Trump poor marks on the economy, including 88% of voters saying the unemployment rate was not so good or poor.

Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist: “One of the reasons our economy is in the state that it’s in, in response to the coronavirus and COVID-19 is because of the failed leadership, the lack of a national strategy, and the lack of accountability coming from the Trump administration in terms of designing a response that would enable American resilience to be on full-display as we’ve responded to this once-in-a-lifetime challenge. I look no further than the unemployment numbers that were released at the end of last week, where we were celebrating 13% unemployment, nevermind the fact that not only is it so much higher in communities of color and the Black community in particular, but that the president had the audacity to disrespect a dead Black man by saying he should look down from heaven and smile at the failure of his leadership, was as insulting as it is disgusting. That is just a demonstration of why we need a different direction when it comes to leadership in our country at every level…I keep coming back to that, because at the end of the day, the policy provisions that we put forward as Democrats are grounded in people.”

Rep. Andy Levin: “The truth is that Mr. Trump’s economy has left Michiganders behind. In 2019, Michigan lost 5,300 manufacturing jobs, and despite his promise that Michigan wouldn’t lose a single plant, auto workers in Michigan, Dearborn, Hamtramck and elsewhere lost their jobs as factories shuttered and downsized. The president has been rolled by the Chinese government on trade and coronavirus. He delayed his response and let China off the hook for its coronavirus cover-up early on to secure a bad trade deal that did nothing to protect American workers or farmers. Friday’s jobs report actually was devastating for working people. We’re experiencing the worst unemployment since the Great Depression, all because Trump failed to prepare for this COVID-19 crisis and created a fragile economy that was especially vulnerable to a downturn.”

DNC Chair Tom Perez: “We are in the middle of an unprecedented public health epidemic, a jobs crisis, and a democracy crisis. The original sin of this pandemic was committed by this president last December, January and February when he repeatedly ignored the advice of his experts to pay attention. His number one goal was to negotiate a trade deal with China; he said that. He avoided confronting China because he wanted a trade deal. He said glowing things about the ‘transparency’ of the Chinese government as it related to the pandemic response and because of his ineffective response during that critical time we have suffered through a needless loss of lives, needless loss of jobs, he has exacerbated this problem exponentially and people in Michigan and across this country are suffering so mightily. He would rather tweet about the problem, than solve the problem.”