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July 12, 2019, 1:11 p.m. EDT

Trump touches down in Wisconsin fresh off verbal fusillade vs. Paul Ryan

President blasts former speaker as ‘a baby’ and a ‘lame-duck failure’ after book excerpts quote Ryan as saying he retired from Congress as an ‘escape hatch’ from working with Trump

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By Associated Press

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The Trump campaign believes the state is winnable and plans an all-out blitz there. But the president’s approval rating has slipped in several key Midwest battlegrounds.

Trump’s Twitter blast against one of Wisconsin’s highest-profile figures appeared to stem from anger over Ryan’s comments in a new book, “American Carnage,” by Tim Alberta of Politico. In it, Ryan faults Trump for “knee-jerk reactions.”

Ryan did not seek re-election in 2018. Democrats took the House majority, a fact Trump noted in his tweets.

“He had the Majority & blew it away with his poor leadership and bad timing. Never knew how to go after the Dems like they go after us. Couldn’t get him out of Congress fast enough!”

In Milwaukee, Trump will attend a fundraiser and visit Derco Aerospace Inc., a subsidiary of aviation giant Lockheed Martin /zigman2/quotes/200691238/composite LMT +0.43% that provides parts, logistics and repair services to fixed-wing aircraft. White House officials said Trump would use the visit to push for the USMCA, whose fate is uncertain in Congress.

Canada and Mexico are Wisconsin’s top two foreign export markets. Last year, the state exported $31 million in products to Canada and $15.2 million in products to Mexico, according to census data.

Wisconsin imported $15.5 million in goods from Canada in 2018, behind only China. The state imported $9.3 million in goods from Mexico last year, the fourth highest amount of imports among the state’s foreign trade partners.

Kurt Bauer, president of Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce, the state’s largest business group, said it’s no coincidence that Trump decided to promote the USMCA in a swing state where the manufacturing sector contributes nearly 20% to the state’s gross domestic product. Bauer said a new agreement with Mexico and Canada would cement markets with the state’s top two export targets.

“Having an agreement with those two countries is absolutely pivotal” for Wisconsin manufacturers, Bauer said.

Karen Gefvert, executive director of the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation, said the USMCA could help dairy farmers struggling with low milk prices.

The agreement allows the U.S. to increase the amount of dairy exports to Canada and removes retaliatory tariffs Mexico has placed on U.S. exports, Gefvert said, which could boost Wisconsin cheese exports by making them cheaper.

Derco Aerospace was accused of fraud in a 2014 lawsuit by the federal government that alleges it and two related companies schemed to overbill on a Navy contract for airplane maintenance. The case is pending in federal court in Milwaukee. The companies have denied wrongdoing.

After visiting Wisconsin, Trump will travel to Ohio for a fundraising dinner in Cleveland. Democrats are criticizing the president for appearing with Brian Colleran, a nursing-home magnate who was forced to pay $19.5 million by the Justice Department for his role in a Medicare fraud scheme.

Key Words: Paul Ryan saw his retirement as a Trump-era ‘escape hatch’: new book

Read on: Foxconn says it’s still committed to Wisconsin plant as Gov. Evers seeks a reset

$ 427.80
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Feb. 21, 2020 6:30p
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