Home Budget, Economy After Glenn Youngkin Drives Away a Massive $3.5 Billion Investment with 2,500...

After Glenn Youngkin Drives Away a Massive $3.5 Billion Investment with 2,500 Good Jobs for Southside, Ford Announces It’s Locating in Michigan

Again, it's important to emphasize that Youngkin has no problem with tons of other Virginia companies doing major business with China.

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And with this news, it’s official: thanks to Glenn Youngkin, Southside Virginia has lost out on a massive investment, with lots of jobs that it badly needs:

Ford Motor Co. plans to build a $3.5 billion factory in Michigan that would employ at least 2,500 people to make lower-cost batteries for a variety of new and existing electric vehicles.

The plant, to be built on land being readied for industrial development about 100 miles (160 kilometers) west of Detroit, would start making batteries in 2026. It would crank out 

[…]

Ford is hoping that the structure of the plant will defuse criticism of spending state tax incentive money on a joint-venture factory that would be part-owned by a Chinese company. Last month the state of Virginia dropped out of the race for the same Ford plant after Gov. Glenn Youngkin characterized the project as a “front” for the Chinese Communist Party that would raise national security concerns. At the time Virginia had not offered an incentive package to Ford.

So just to quickly review why this massive investment didn’t come to Virginia, see here for VA House Democratic Leader Don Scott’s speech back on January 19, in which he explained:

“We all thought we were trying to achieve the same bipartisan goals of bringing good-paying jobs and economic development to Virginia, but apparently, in his absence last year, the governor missed that part of the transition briefing. At this point, the governor needs to go to Southside, hold a town hall and explain why it is OK for him to make tens of millions of dollars off of investments in China and Chinese investments in the United States when he was in Carlyle Group, but he decided to play politics when it came to the livelihood for an entire region.”

Also see former Virginia Lt. Governor Bill Bolling (R)’s post, in which he called Youngkin’s decision to kill a “$3.5B economic investment that would have created 2,500 jobs” a “head scratcher” which “requires a lot more explanation” (which we never really got, by the way).

And see Thomas Bowman’s post on how “Youngkin blocking a Ford Motor Company #EV Battery Plant is a case study in why ambitious leaders shouldn’t put politics before people”; that the “decision is not simply a missed opportunity for the Commonwealth,” but this “politically motivated action caused long-term damage to Virginia’s reputation” (e.g., “It could be a long time before another company seriously considers locating their project here.”).

Finally, check out this post, which explains that China is currently a huge trading partner of Virginia’s; that numerous top Virginia companies have MAJOR business ties with China, including Youngkin’s Counselor Richard Cullen, whose company McGuire Woods is in a “strategic alliance” with FuJae Partners of Shanghai. So clearly, Youngkin doesn’t care about any of that…only this deal, which would have brought billions in investment and thousands of jobs to an economically depressed part of Virginia. Great, huh?

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