This week the White House played host to a series of events dubbed Made in America Week. The themed events notably included a roundtable discussion and a product showcase on the the White House’s south lawn, where “products ranged from sandwiches, to wool blankets, to firetrucks; each business connected by the common thread of American excellence,” according to the White House blog.
It was also an excellent opportunity to see Donald Trump in a Stetson hat.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 21, 2017
It’s a curious event for a brand and family that has so publicly profited from foreign business and resources. Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort, where he spends much of his free time, hires numerous foreign workers. The company requested permission to hire dozens of new foreign employees recently, including housekeepers, waiters, and cooks.
When one of the goals of the Made in America Week is to ensure that “the interests of the workers in the United States would not be pushed aside for global projects,” according to the White House’s description of the campaign, it’s easy to wonder: Which of the various Trump brands and companies would pass the Made in America test? Not many.
Example: It’s a well known fact that some of the Trump Make America Great Again caps ($25) are embroidered here in the United States — in a factory in Los Angeles. But that’s not where they’re manufactured. That honor goes to China, or Vietnam, or Bangladesh.
Another Trump brand — Ivanka Trump’s namesake line of apparel and accessories — is also exclusively made in foreign countries, including China, Bangladesh, Vietnam, and more. The list goes on, in fact. The president’s collection of suits and ties sold in various department stores in the past were also all manufactured overseas. As far as we can tell, there are no Trump brand products completely and exclusively made in America.
But it turns out most Americans, and so most ardent fans of Donald Trump, don’t seem to care. Despite the lip-service love given to “Made in America” products, most people do not express that love with their wallets. A poll conducted just this week by Reuters shows that consumers may like the “Made in the USA” sticker, but fewer than 30 percent are willing to pay an American price tag. The remaining percentage shop with price in mind, and that means dropping endless products from foreign lands in their Walmart shopping carts.
For those who wish to “Make America Great Again,” it apparently doesn’t matter if the “making” happens in America or not.
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