For the first time in the history of the UAW, the approximately 146,000 members of the union are striking simultaneously against the Big Three auto companies in the United States – General Motors, Ford Motor Company and Stellantis, owner of luxury car brands like Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep and Ram. (Related: THIS DOESN'T ADD UP: Joe Biden gives auto companies BILLIONS in taxpayer dollars while auto worker wages are getting CUT IN HALF.)
For now, the strikes are limited to three assembly plants: A General Motors plant in Wentzville, Missouri, a Ford plant in Wayne, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit, and a Jeep plant owned by Stellantis in Toledo, Ohio. These three plants have combined nearly 13,000 workers who are part of the UAW.
The UAW is seeking across-the-board wage increases of 36 percent over four years. The Big Three have countered by offering increases for select workers ranging from 17.5 percent to 20 percent over the same period.
In addition to the wage increases, the UAW is seeking the restoration of cost-of-living pay increases, an end to the many tiers of wages for factory jobs, a 32-hour regular work week for 40 hours worth of pay, the restoration of traditional defined-benefit pensions for new hires – who now only receive 401(k)-style retirement plans – and pension increases for retirees, among other major items.
For the "Breitbart Business Digest" on Breitbart, news site Economics and Finance Editor John Carney noted how the economic policies of the Biden administration are just as guilty for causing the strike as the refusal of the Big Three to provide just wage increases and better benefits for its workers.
"The … strike by the United Auto Workers is as much a protest against Bidenomics as it is the policies of General Motors, Ford Motor Company and Stellantis," wrote Carney.
He added that, when Biden took control of the White House and passed the $1.9 trillion spending program known as the American Rescue Plan Act, it immediately caused inflation to surge, leading to a massive reduction in the real value of wages, even for union workers who statistically make more than their non-union counterparts.
"It was even worse in the Detroit region that is America's automaking heartland," wrote Carney. "While all Americans have been hit hard by the surge of inflation tied to Biden's deficit spending, Detroit's autoworkers have had it far worse than most of their fellow Americans. The place we once called the 'Arsenal of Democracy' [in World War II] was ground zero for 'Bidenflation's' destructive explosion."
In June 2022, average inflation in the U.S. peaked at 8.9 percent. But in the Metro Detroit region, inflation rose to 9.7 percent. Furthermore, over the last 12 months, while nationwide year-over-year inflation has fallen to 3.7 percent, in Michigan inflation is closer to six percent.
Runaway inflation is just one aspect of how the Biden administration betrayed autoworkers, wrote Carney. Just as important is the White House's push to electrify most new vehicles, leading to a rapid decline in payrolls for workers as the electric vehicle factories are not covered under the UAW's contracts, leading to substantially lower wages for union employees at those plants.
"Even if you are a big believer in the notion that climate change is an existential threat that requires transformation and sacrifice, how can requiring an outsized sacrifice by autoworkers be justified?" asked Carney. "If we are all to benefit from rushing the process to electric vehicles, why are autoworkers left paying the price?"
Watch this clip from "Kudlow" on Fox Business as host Larry Kudlow and panelists Joe Concha and Liz Peek discuss how the UAW strike poses a serious problem for Biden.