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President Obama visits Ford plant in Liberty

President Obama lauded the hard work of Ford Motor Company employees during a speech delivered at the new Ford Motor Company stamping plant near Claycomo Friday.

“We bet on the American worker.  We bet on you.  And today, that bet has paid off because the American auto industry has come roaring back,” said Obama.

During his address meant to call attention to the success of the administration’s shoring up of the auto industry and to play up the improving national economy, Obama acknowledged that Ford had stood on its own two feet during times of economic crisis.

“Look at what’s going on right here at the plant.  The new F-150 is built tougher than ever, more fuel-efficient than ever.  You’ve got trouble making them fast enough.  You had to bring on a third shift of 900 workers just to keep up with demand,” said Obama

Earlier this year, Ford announced it was adding a third shift at the Claycomo plant to keep up with demand for the F-150 pick-up, America’s most popular light truck. That shift added more than 900 more workers to the facility. Additionally, the company is hiring 1,100 workers who will begin working on a new assembly line that will begin to produce the new Transit van in the first quarter of 2014.

Ford is making a $1.1 billion investment in upgrades and expansion at Claycomo. Nationwide, Ford is three-quarters of the way to delivering on its plan to create 12,000 hourly jobs in the United States by 2015. The company also is investing $16 billion in its U.S. product development and manufacturing operations – including $6.2 billion in plant-specific investments.

In order to help Ford keep the Claycomo plant open and expand, Associated Industries of Missouri spearheaded legislation passed during a special session of the General Assembly in 2010 that will provide the car maker with up to $100 million in incentives over ten years. The legislation also helps the state’s parts manufacturers that feed not only Ford, but the state’s other auto builders as well.

“We’ve shown the world that the American people are tough, they’re resilient.  The only thing built tougher than Ford trucks are American workers, the American people,” said Obama.

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