Carrier Says It’s In Talks With Trump After Trump Claim About Negotiations

Esme Cribb contributed reporting.

Carrier Corp., a company that makes air conditioners, confirmed in a Thursday tweet that the company has had “discussions” with Donald Trump’s transition team after the President-elect claimed he is working to keep Carrier from moving a plant abroad.

Trump published a tweet Thursday morning saying that he has been trying to keep Carrier from moving its plant from Indiana to Mexico.

CNBC reported Friday morning based on unnamed sources that Vice President-elect Mike Pence has been leading negotiations with Carrier to reach deal that “would likely keep a workforce in the U.S.” Trump spokesman Jason Miller was asked about progress made in talks with Carrier on a call with reporters Friday, but he did not answer the question.

Libertarian Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) on Thursday afternoon criticized Trump for taking the unusual step of putting pressure on a specific company to keep jobs in the U.S.

Carrier, which is owned by United Technologies Corp., a big federal defense contractor, announced plans earlier this year to move its Indiana plant to Mexico, eliminating 1,400 jobs in the U.S. The company told Reuters last week that it would help its American workers prepare for new jobs.

“By providing three years advance notice of the move and by funding education and retraining programs for up to four years after the move is complete, we are providing employees with both time and opportunity to help them to make a smooth transition,” the company said in a statement.

Trump criticized American companies for moving manufacturing jobs out of the U.S. on the campaign trail, specifically mentioning Carrier’s plans at a rally in Indiana. Pence also met with Carrier as governor in March, and said he worked with the company to keep some jobs in Indiana.

Trump’s tweet touting negotiations with Carrier follows his false claim last week that he worked with Ford Motor Co. to stop plans to move a plant from Kentucky to Mexico. The company never planned to completely shut down the plant and was only considering moving production of one line to Mexico. Ford Motor Co. said last week that it would no longer move the production of the Lincoln MKC sport utility vehicle out of the U.S.

“Today, we confirmed with the President-elect that our small Lincoln utility vehicle made at the Louisville Assembly Plant will stay in Kentucky,” the company said in a statement to the Washington Post. “We are encouraged that President-elect Trump and the new Congress will pursue policies that will improve U.S. competitiveness and make it possible to keep production of this vehicle here in the United States.”

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