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The factory floor erupted in cheers when Donald Trump arrived at Carrier’s Indianapolis air-conditioning plant. With just a bully pulpit (and a mere $7 million in bespoke tax cuts), he kept the Indiana plant from moving to Mexico. And for his first economic triumph, the incoming executive received a savior’s welcome.

“Companies are not going to leave the United States anymore without customers. It’s not going to happen,” Trump bellowed before the crowd erupted.

But there wasn’t any cheering a mile and a half up the road and around the corner. Just like Carrier originally, the Rexnord ball bearing factory is slated to head to Mexico. But Trump isn’t coming to save this workforce. Next April, 295 employees will be out of work.

Taken together, the two plants illustrate the corporatism that’s corrupting the GOP’s free-market message. If Carrier is the model, Republicans are now explicitly in the business of picking winners and losers.

And it’s not fair. The United Steelworkers Local 1999 knows that better than most. The union represents workers at both factories.

“This is the same as the Carrier situation,” union president Chuck Jones told a local paper two weeks before Trump cut his deal. Reading old reports about both companies it can be hard to tell them apart. Both manufacturers paid high wages and pulled in good profits. Up until last week, both were even headed to Monterrey, Mexico.

The only difference between the two was that Carrier showed up in Trump’s Twitter feed during the campaign. He promised to make the Rust Belt great again and the air-conditioning factory made for a good photo-op. But even Trump can’t cut enough deals to stop economic forces from wrenching manufacturing jobs away from America.

Since 2000, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 5 million blue collar workers have lost manufacturing jobs. And bringing those backs is both a herculean task and a fool’s errand. As globalization increased, so did American efficiency. National manufacturing output is at a record high according to numbers compiled by the Federal Reserve.

The country is making more durable goods domestically while outsourcing production of lesser items. As a result, consumers have enjoyed cheaper and better products. Trying to reverse that flow would be like making America an agrarian economy again.

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Those tectonic economic forces won’t stop for Trump. His deals and threats might keep some factories state side but not the majority. Betting against the global economy and picking winners and losers is a good way to breed resentment in the Rust Belt.

As Trump’s motorcade rolled away from the Carrier plant, small clusters of Rexnord workers waved signs pleading with the president to deliver them from their fate. But the president didn’t stop, and because he didn’t choose them, they’ll be unemployed in a few months.

Philip Wegmann is a commentary writer for the Washington Examiner.

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