A bipartisan group of lawmakers sent a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) to consider provisions to aid the motor vehicle industry through the coronavirus pandemic. The letter, sent on May 12 by 61 members of Congress, including Reps. Debbie Dingell (D-Mich.), Fred Upton (R-Mich.), Haley Stevens (D-Mich.) and Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio), emphasizes the industry’s contributions to the country’s GDP and employment.
“Historically, the vehicle industry has contributed 3-3.5 percent of America’s total gross domestic product and 5.1 percent of private-sector employment,” the letter states. “America’s motor vehicle industry must remain the heart of our nation’s manufacturing capability.”
The challenges the industry faces from the pandemic could severely hurt the economy as well as employment, the letter states. The members offered to work with Pelosi and McCarthy to construct a thoughtful response to the issue and help keep the industry afloat.
“In some regards, challenges the industry face exceed those of the 2008 financial meltdown,” they wrote. “As workers begin to be called back during the COVID-19 pandemic, serious challenges confront the protocols under which this must be organized to assure worker safety. Significant organizational costs will attend to this process.”