President Trump stepped up his attacks on General Motors today and called on the company to move jobs back to the United States from overseas.
Trump said in a tweet that the automaker's U.S. workforce was now the smallest in Detroit, noting that the company has shed jobs, "despite the saving help given them by the USA."
That was an apparent reference to the federal government's auto industry-bailout at the height of the Great Recession. GM received almost $50 billion in government assistance, most of which was ultimately repaid.
In the tweet, the president made the dubious claim that GM had "moved major plants to China, BEFORE I CAME INTO OFFICE."
While GM manufactures millions of vehicles in China as part of joint ventures with local companies, virtually all of them are sold in the Chinese market. In fact, GM now sells more cars in China than North America.
A GM spokesman declined to comment on the tweet.
GM employs almost 100,000 people in the U.S., although its unionized workforce trails those of Ford and Fiat Chrysler.
Trump has been especially vocal in his criticism of GM since last November, when the company announced plans to eliminate 14,000 jobs in North America and close its Lordstown, Ohio, plant, where the Chevrolet Cruze was manufactured.
He later visited Ohio, where he said, "this country's done a lot for General Motors. You better get back in there soon. That's Ohio, and you better get back in there soon."
Trump said at the time that he was taking steps to keep the Lordstown plant open, but the factory turned out its last Cruze in March and has been idle ever since.