Trump Claims Credit For Bringing Back Sprint Jobs That Were Already Announced

AP

The thousands of telecommunications jobs President-elect Donald Trump claimed Wednesday that he was bringing back to the United States were part of a previously announced investment deal between Sprint and its main funder, SoftBank.

“5,000 jobs announced today are part of the 50,000 jobs that [SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son] previously announced. It will be a combination of newly created jobs and bringing some existing jobs back to the U.S,” a Sprint spokeswoman said in a statement to Politico, after Trump made his announcement to the press.

Trump on Wednesday afternoon spoke briefly to reporters outside of his Mar-A-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida to brag about 5,000 jobs being added in the United States by Sprint and an additional 3,000 jobs being created by OneWeb, a satellite manufacturing startup. He had said that those jobs were a result of “what is happening and the spirit and the hope” from his election, later adding that, “because of me they are doing 5,000 jobs in this country.”

According to the New York Times, the 50,000 job expansion was planned as part of a $50 billion investment by SoftBank into operations in the United States. That funding was announced in October, before the election, according to Politico. SoftBank has owned a controlling stake in Sprint for years.

SoftBank is also behind the hiring at OneWeb, which received $1.2 billion in funding from the investor. OneWeb announced on Dec. 19 that funding would help it “create nearly 3,000 new engineering, manufacturing and supporting jobs in the U.S. over the next four years,” according to the Politico report.

Son, the SoftBank CEO, met with Trump earlier this month, according to the New York Times. In a statement Wednesday announcing the Sprint jobs, Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure said the company was “excited to work with President-Elect Trump and his Administration to do our part to drive economic growth and create jobs in the U.S.”

Trump transition spokesman Sean Spicer clarified Trump’s role in bringing the Sprint and OneWeb jobs to the U.S. on a call with reporters Thursday. He said that SoftBank’s CEO had reached out to Trump a few weeks back.

According to Spicer, SoftBank’s Masayoshi Son said, “Based on your agenda and your philosophy of wanting to create a more business-friendly, more worker-friendly climate here in America by reducing regulations and the tax burdens that companies face, I want to be part of that team. I want to bring jobs back to America and help you implement your agenda.”

Spicer added that Sprint’s CEO had also called Trump on Wednesday.

“Obviously we’ll continue to follow up on this and make sure it happens but I think you’re going to see more and more of this,” Spicer said. “There’s several leaders of companies and corporations that have started to reach out to folks and they’re really inspired by the philosophy and agenda and business climate that the President-elect wants to establish in this country that both creates economic growth and fosters job creation by putting more money in American workers’ pockets, so I think this is just the tip of the iceberg.”

This post has been updated.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tierney Sneed is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. She previously worked for U.S. News and World Report. She grew up in Florida and attended Georgetown University.

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