A major pillar of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign was bringing outsourced manufacturing jobs back to America, though increasing factory automation may make that goal a difficult one to accomplish.
According to an article from Inverse, many Trump supporters are realistic about the role automation is playing in the future of manufacturing, and see the change as inevitable and largely positive.
Though many American manufacturing jobs were lost to overseas factories, countries such as China are starting to push out their own workers in favor of robots.
Foxconn, the company that produces Apple iPhones and iPads, announced five years ago it would replace 500,000 Chinese factory jobs with “Foxbots,” and it recently said it was more than 4 percent of the way to reaching that goal.
Trump supporters tended to care more about energy production, taxes, and education programs for displaced workers over combating automation.
Another main concern, including that of financial planner Joe Capucci, was that those automated plants come back to U.S. soil rather than remain abroad, with some supporters adding that there will always be a need for workers to service and repair automated assembly lines.
“We’ve become a service economy,” Capucci said. “We gotta start making shit again.”