Romney was right: Chrysler will build Jeeps in China

Mitt RomneyThen-presidential challenger Mitt Romney set off a firestorm with a campaign ad that accused President Obama of forcing the sale of “Chrysler to Italians who are going to build Jeeps in China.” The ad eventually even garnered a dubious honor by a fact-checking organization. As it turns out, Romney was right after all.

When the controversy first erupted, Italian-born Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne was unequivocal in denying that Jeep had plans to move any of its operations to China. That was on Oct. 30, one week before the presidential election.

“I feel obliged to unambiguously restate our position: Jeep production will not be moved from the United States to China,” he wrote in a letter to employees, according to NBC News. “Jeep assembly lines will remain in operation in the United States and will constitute the backbone of the brand. … It is inaccurate to suggest anything different.”

However, Marchione dodged the issue. The Romney ad never said that the Jeep brand was going to move to China — it only said that Chrysler was going to build Jeeps in China.

Nonetheless, PolitiFact dubbed the Romney ad the “Lie of the Year” and described it as “a lie told in the critical state of Ohio in the final days of a close campaign.” PolitiFact added: “It originated with a conservative blogger, who twisted an accurate news story into a falsehood. Then it picked up steam when the Drudge Report ran with it.”

What a difference a few months make. Monday’s edition of The Detroit News reported that Marchionne announced that some models of the Jeep brand would be built in China.

“As part of our global expansion of the Jeep brand, there are some cars — that because of the price position in the market — can never be made in the U.S. and exported,” Marchionne said at the North American International Auto Show. “We’re going to be announcing the first step in the globalization of Jeep [in China]. There’s another one that’s going to come in Russia. These things are part of a natural process of expansion.”

Marchione advised that while the Jeep’s premier models — Wrangler and Grand Cherokee — will continue to be American-made, “If you tell me I cannot make a [Jeep] Patriot somewhere else, I might as well go out of the market.”

If anyone was misleading here, it wasn’t Romney — it was Marchionne. The decision to add even a part of Jeep’s manufacturing operations to the Far East isn’t made lightly — it requires months of negotiation.

One can appreciate the need for a certain degree of secrecy during such planning stages. That being the case, it would have been better — and far more honest — had he not said anything at all.

Here’s the ad that started it all:

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About Michael Dorstewitz

Mike has been with BizPac Review almost from the beginning. Email Mike at michael@bizpacreview and follow him on Twitter at @MikeBPR.

  • MiddleMan

    If anyone knows who is doing business with China, its Mittens! Heaven only knows how much US manufacturing he outsourced to China during his career. So yes, lets suggest that WE made a huge error in not electing him president because he was right about yet another victory for China… Only in America!

    • Thomas Trombold

      Thats right MM but just another of many lies told by Obama, his helpers like Axlerod,, Immelt, on and on. How's the economy doint since the re-election? Employment, how about the addtional taxes EVERYONE is paying not just the "millionaires and billionaires", Live in a dream world my friend you got 4 more years.

    • Dannan

      I would much rather have a president that knows & understands business and how it works, both here & globally. If the politicians didn't keep adding taxes & regulations to the businesses in this country, to the point where they finacially can't make a profit here, then they wouldn't have to move things overseas. The media didn't cover it, but Obama spent billions of our "stimulous" money for Chinese engineers to come here & build a bridge here in the U.S. Why did he do that? To keep relations good with China? If you owned & ran a business, wouldn't you find the most efficient way to run it ? If you need to buy widgets for your business, would you buy those that cost $10 from here, or for $2 from somewhere else? The ones that cost $10 have to mark theirs up because that company has to pay 2 or 3 different taxes & regulation fees – which they pass on in the cost. If you had a lot of money, your financial advisor would recommend that you "diversify" or put a little here & a little there, in different countries so it doesn't affect you if their economies drop. If Romney would have been elected, I don't think my (and all working people) pay checks would not just have been cut. – paying higher taxes that Obama promised would NOT rise one dime if we don't make more than $250,000. Just face it – the man lies & lies to turn you against people that make money and to say what you want to hear, Too bad he never intends to do most of what he promised except to " transform the nation" into a weaker, socialist country.

  • sunflower

    So….what do we have here, the Italians helping Oblammer to get elected as well. What a pack of liars all around.

  • Isabella1709

    Well gee, I could say I told you so…but the morons on the left wouldn't be listening anyway. But I am writing Chrysler to let them know I will NEVER buy one of their cars, trucks, etc. because they CHOSE to undermine the USA and I am done with them all. I'll stick with my American made Japanese car! How ironic!

  • Redvoyager

    As Earl Pitt would say "Wake up Amerika" learn to speak Chineese

  • Rich

    It is sad. Our representatives do whatever they can to ship jobs overseas. It seems like our biggest export is jobs.

  • Lisa

    The Biggest mistake we made not electing Mitt!

  • KevinM

    What a shock yet again Romney proves right. The only people surprised are the Oblama supporters who think the sun rises and sets from their King's rear.

    • Ginger

      You miss the poiunt, MiddleMan. Romney's ad was factual, but with the help of the irresponsible media, citizens were con vinced it was a lie and voters opinions were swayed.

      Now, when it is too late. The truth comes out. Romney was right.

  • hmm

    Oh no, Jeep is localizing production for the Jeeps they sell to China! Mitt Romney was so right, its all one big Obama conspiracy. This must mean that ALL of our production is going to China even though that's not what is being said here. I must eat the BS for breakfast or my republican friends won't talk to me.

    Give me a freaking break.

    • KC Kent

      Soon enough more and more Jeep production will move to China/overseas and they will leave only a bit here for political reasons. Wanna bet?

      PS Your Republican "friends" don''t want to speak with you 'cause your head is up your arse.

      KC

      • adam

        So true. LOL.

  • Jon

    Guys, c'mon. Jeep had never denied Jobs in China during the election.. What they vehemently contested was Romney's ad claiming that Jobs in America were being shipped to China, this is NOT happening. Jobs are not being lost.

    Stop spinning!

    • CLH

      For those like Jon who are saying no jobs are lost….What Marchionne said was they are MOVING the Jeep Patriot part making to China & Russia. "— that because of the price position in the market — can never be made in the U.S. and exported,”. The Jeep Patriot is CURRENTLY made in the US, so they are MOVING!! I am guesing you are just trying to pretend that you didn't listen to a bunch of lies the 1st go around? Marchionne said they are MOVING the Jeep Patriot part making to CHINA & RUSSIA because it is too expensive in our Economy to make them here!! Which is TRUE because of people like OBAMA. They didn't say "starting a NEW line in China" Marchionne is MOVING production there for cheaper costs and that TAKES AWAY JOBS. And even if they weren't "moving" and were only "starting a new line", it sure as HECK wouldn't be adding jobs to OUR economy where it is needed. Instead, Marchionne is supplying CHINA & RUSSIA with more jobs. Awesome! I agree with Dannan. Politicians are ALL crooks, but I sure would prefer a rich business man to a man who raises taxes after he promised not to, wants to raise the debt ceiling as he said would be stupid before and whose preacher talked out his BUTT and all the media did was cover it up! Let a Caucasian President go to a church for YEARS where the preacher said all but Whites should burn in Hell and see what would happen!!!!!!!! He would be hung out to dry! But all these Obamers who stare at him with coated eyes just nodding & smiling like a bunch of drones think this is great news and must be someone elses fault than the Great Obama! Enjoy the next 4 years and a smaller paychecks! Maybe next time you will find out more facts before you just smile & nod.

      • jcm52

        The Patriot is made in the US. It will continue to be made in the US. All US-bought Patriots will be made in the US.

        The Patriot is currently not for sale in China. It will later be for sale in China. But first, it will need to be built in China. Just like Japanese companies build their US-sold cars in the US, American companies build their Chinese-sold cars in China. For a number of reasons, building a car in one country and then shipping it across a massive ocean is expensive. For this reason, cars sold in China will be made in China, and cars sold in North America are made in North America.

        it would have been better — and far more honest — had the author of this article not said anything at all.

        Chrysler said BEFORE the election that this was their plan. Just because the article you've just read implies otherwise doesn't change that.

        • what else

          Let me ask you this, are you a CEO or a CEF in Chrysler Co? How do you know that Chrysler won't make part in China or Russia?, why the cost to make in China is cheaper then in our country because they don't charge a stupid tax and a stupid union fee or they don't give money to some lazy ass laying around the house and hand down

    • Spankypage

      They may not be taking jobs from those already employed…..but they're still taking jobs from those they could employ in the states!!!

      You say stop spinning??

      I say start using the brain God gave you!

  • Joe Lynch

    Yep,OHIO voted for the liar, not the one who told the truth!!!!. Just think fellow BUCKEYES, we could have made the diffeence.