Spox Dodges Question On Whether Carrier Deal Could Return To Bite Trump


Trump transition spokesman Jason Miller avoided questions on Friday as to whether Donald Trump’s deal with Carrier Corp. to keep some jobs at its Indianapolis plant in the United States could embolden other companies seeking concessions from the President-elect’s incoming administration.

On a conference call with reporters Friday morning, CNN’s Athena Jones asked Miller to address concerns that Trump’s agreement with Carrier has given other companies “a blueprint for how to pressure a Trump administration to get concessions.”

Miller dodged the question, instead praising the President-elect’s willingness to “pick up the phone” and deal directly with companies.

“I think what this really does is it puts down a marker that they’re going to be willing to pick up the phone and make phone calls and do everything they can to keep companies here and to keep American jobs here,” he said.

In a speech at Carrier’s plant in Indianapolis on Thursday, Trump said that his promises of a “major massive cutting of regulations,” as well as a proposed corporate tax cut from 35 percent to 15 percent, enticed the company to keep more than 1,100 jobs in the country. Carrier also received $7 million worth of incentives from the state of Indiana, where Vice President-elect Mike Pence is governor, according to a New York Times report.

Miller cited Trump’s nominations of former Goldman Sachs executive Steve Mnuchin to be treasury secretary and billionaire investor Wilbur Ross to be commerce secretary as proof that the President-elect is committed to an “economic populist tax plan.”

“We’re putting the right kind of people in place who know how to fight for American jobs,” he said. “I think that the broader takeaway here is this incoming administration is one that is going to fight even before formally taking office to keep American jobs here.”