Republican J.D. Vance, running against Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH) for Ohio’s open United States Senate seat, says the U.S. needs a “committed national policy of tariffs” to “rebuild the industrial heartland of America.”
Vance, whose best-selling memoir Hillbilly Elegy chronicled the deindustrialization of Middletown, Ohio, where he spent his childhood, told Breitbart News in an exclusive interview that a national industrial policy is vital to revitalizing what was once the heartbeat of American manufacturing.
The interview with Vance happened over lunch after one of Vance’s stops in Chillicothe — roughly 100 miles outside of Cincinnati — when he was making a swing through southeast Ohio to channel his Appalachian roots. Vance started the day in Gallipolis in Gallia County, Chillicothe in Brown County, and Mt. Orab in Ross County.
“Far too many Republicans,” Vance said, have been concerned “about the interests of multinational corporations instead of their voters” when it comes to job-killing trade deficits and free trade deals.
The U.S.-China trade deficit, alone, has resulted in the elimination of 3.7 million American jobs from 2001 to 2018. Ohio, during that period after China entered the World Trade Organization (WTO), lost nearly 138,000 jobs. Hundreds of thousands more jobs in Ohio have been eliminated as a result of other free trade deals and trade deficits with countries such as Mexico and Canada.
In Ryan’s district, since he took office in 2003, nearly 25,000 manufacturing jobs have been lost and drug overdose deaths have skyrocketed by up to 400 percent in some areas at the same time.
“It’s really straightforward and simple. The basic model of globalization has undercut the jobs of Ohioans in two basic ways: One, directly shipping their jobs overseas to places like China or Mexico, and two, through the immigration system — allowing the importation of a large class of people to undercut the wages of American citizens,” Vance said.