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New York City lightsby Marita Noon, CFACT.org

During the 2016 election, both candidates promised to bring manufacturing back to the US Donald Trump made the recovery of jobs lost to China and Mexico a cornerstone of his campaign. Hillary Clinton’s website states: “While too many politicians and experts in Washington gave up on American manufacturing, Hillary never did.”

“The rhetoric,” reports US News, “has struck home with Americans across the country — particularly those currently or formerly employed in the embattled US goods-producing and manufacturing sectors, who have repeatedly borne the brunt of corporate efforts to move work overseas.”

Because many of the lost jobs are due to automation and technological improvements — which have enabled more production from fewer workers — there is skepticism on both sides of the aisle as to whether these lost jobs can actually come back. However, I believe, most Americans don’t want to see more of our jobs disappear. Harry Moser, founder and president of the Reshoring Initiative, which aims to bring manufacturing back home, is optimistic. He told me that we are now losing about as many jobs to offshoring, as we are recovering: “We’ve gone from losing somewhere around 200,000 manufacturing jobs a year in 2000 to 2003 to net breaking even. Balancing the trade deficit will increase US manufacturing by about four million jobs at current levels of productivity.”

According to MarketWatch.com, the percentage of people who work in manufacturing is at a record low of 8.5% — which compares to “20% in 1980, 30% in 1960, and a record 39% during World War II.”

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© 2016 CFACT

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