On Tuesday, President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team and Indianapolis-based Carrier announced a deal to keep 1,100 jobs in Indiana.
Trump unveiled the details of that deal at a press conference at Carrier’s plant on the west side of Indianapolis Thursday afternoon.
Trump told workers he stepped in to save Carrier jobs after hearing on the nightly news a Carrier worker felt Trump promised to save those jobs. Trump said he never made a campaign promise to save Carrier jobs, specifically. Instead, he said he was speaking euphemistically about manufacturing jobs in general. Trump addressed the worker’s mother, who was in the crowd at Carrier on Thursday.
“Whoever the hell your son is, these people owe him a lot,” Trump says.
Carrier confirmed that Indiana offered the company $7 million in incentives over multiple years, contingent on “employment, job retention and investment.”
Gregory Hayes, CEO of United Technologies, also announced the company would invest $16 million in the Indianapolis plant over the next few years.
Trump told workers more jobs would come from that investment and from new policies to lower the business tax rates and reduce regulations.
“These companies aren’t going to be leaving anymore. They’re not going to be taking people’s hearts out. They’re not going to be announcing – like they did at Carrier – that they’re closing up and they’re moving to Mexico,” he says. “Over 1,100 jobs. And by the way, that number’s going to up very substantially as they expand in this area, this plant.”
Trump promised to make more personal calls like he did to Carrier to make it harder for other companies to leave the country.
Vice President-elect Mike Pence credited Trump for Carrier’s decision to stay in Indiana.
“As governor I couldn’t be more pleased and grateful that thanks to President-elect Donald Trump, Carrier has decided to stay and grow in Indiana,” Pence says.
Trump pledged during his campaign to stop the company from moving manufacturing jobs to Mexico. After months of anticipation, the company has confirmed it’s a done deal.
The company told workers earlier this year it planned to cut around 2,000 Indiana jobs and move operations to Mexico to save money. A video of that announcement went viral, and the Carrier layoffs became a focal issue for Trump and other candidates on the campaign trail.
Brett Voorhies, the president of the Indiana state AFL-CIO and a member of the United Steelworkers Local 1999, speculates Trump and Pence might have offered up more state or federal tax breaks. The Pence administration already made Carrier pay back $1.2 million in those because of the move.
Carrier stood to save $65 million a year by moving to Mexico, but state officials say tax incentives couldn’t have come close to making up the difference.
Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Drew Daudelin, Annie Ropeik, and Nick Janzen contributed reporting to this story.