Ford CEO Mark Fields: “It’s Really Unfortunate When Politics Get in the Way of Facts”

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The predictability of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is both reassuring and scary. Earlier today, I shared with you the news that Ford was shifting small car production to Mexico but keeping trucks in the United States. This, friends, is not news. We’ve reported it months earlier. However, Donald Trump decided to predictably overreact and declare that Ford was going to “fire all of their employees in the United States.”

Here’s the funny thing about the stuff that spews out of the presidential nominee’s mouth; it’s not usually accurate.

CNN interviewed Ford’s CEO — and Steve Carrell lookalike — Mark Fields this afternoon about his statements. Let’s roll that beautiful bean footage!

CNN: “So Mr. Trump is wrong. Is that correct, Mark?”

Mark Fields: “That is correct.”

Ford invests more money in the United States than any other automaker. We’ve talked about that very fact many times, all the way back to last year when Ford started production of the F-750 and F-650 medium duty trucks in Ohio. Last time I checked, Ohio isn’t in Mexico. It’s actually quite closer to Canada.

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Fields goes on to talk about how the Focus and C-Max production, built at Michigan Assembly but moving to Mexico, won’t cause a single job loss for anyone in Michigan. Or actually, anyone in general. Long ago we reported that Ford planned on keeping that plant running for new products. We even strongly believe those new products are the new Ford Ranger and revived Ford Bronco.

I believe in my heart of hearts that if it was fiscally responsible to build every single car that Ford sells worldwide in the United States they would. So many factors come into play when deciding where to put a production facility. Before you go blaming Ford for their business decisions, take a look at the political environment in all of the locations.

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If Ford were to start losing money and not be profitable, then the retirement accounts of many Americans would tank in value because they are shareholders of Ford Motor Company or a supplier. Understanding the larger social and economic issues of a decision is a skill that Donald Trump has yet to seem to possess.

Mr. Trump should also be reminded that FCA announced they’re completely killing the Dart, and that the Chrysler 200 that’s currently built in Michigan is likely going away soon. They’re replacing production of the 200 with the new Ram pickup trucks, but it’s basically the same thing Ford is doing yet they seem to be getting a pass.

It seems odd to me that today, like it did months ago, that Donald Trump would attack Ford. They were the most fiscally-responsible automaker during the Great Recession and didn’t take a single dollar of taxpayer-funded bailout money. Trump says he doesn’t like loser, but Ford has been a winner for awhile yet he doesn’t seem to care. Maybe his definition of winning and my definition are two entirely different things?

What do you think? Let us know in the comments below or over in our forums!

via [CNN Money]

Ohio photo via [Wikimedia Commons]

 

Chad Kirchner is a regular contributor to Corvette Forum and Ford Truck Enthusiasts, among other auto sites.

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