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Fetterman Wants to Block Sale of U.S. Steel to Japanese Company

Fetterman Wants to Block Sale of U.S. Steel to Japanese Company

“Steel is always about security – both our national security and the economic security of our steel communities.”

Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA) said he would do “anything” to block Japanese steelmaker Nippon Steel’s acquisition of U.S. Steel.

Nippon Steel bought U.S. Steel for $14.9 billion. U.S. Steel will keep its name and headquarters in Pittsburgh.

From The Hill:

“I’m gonna do everything I can to block it,” Fetterman wrote on X.

“I live across the street from U.S. Steel’s Edgar Thompson plant in Braddock,” Fetterman said in a statement. “It’s absolutely outrageous that U.S. Steel has agreed to sell themselves to a foreign company. Steel is always about security – both our national security and the economic security of our steel communities. I am committed to doing anything I can do, using my platform and my position, to block this foreign sale.”

J.P. Morgan and Andrew Carnegie founded U.S. Steel 122 years ago.

Nippon Steel already has a huge hold on the world’s steel market, but buying U.S. steel gives it an upper hand in America’s auto industry.

Owning U.S. steel gives Nippon Steel access to the “specialized steel used in electric vehicles.”

Nippon Steel will become the second-largest steelmaker in the world. Chican’s Baowu Steel Group holds the top spot.

The United Steelworkers union lashed out at the deal, mainly because Nippon Steel and U.S. Steel did not consult with them before they made the deal.

The union described “the sale as greedy and shortsighted.” But both companies promised to honor the contracts:

“We remained open throughout this process to working with U.S. Steel to keep this iconic American company domestically owned and operated,” Union President David McCall said. “Instead, it chose to push aside the concerns of its dedicated workforce and sell to a foreign-owned company.”

U.S. Steel and Nippon Steel said they would honor existing contracts with union-represented workers, and that the companies agreed on the importance of investing in employees.

Don Furko, president of union local in Clairton, Pa., said he was hopeful that new owners will add more workers in the region. The union chapter represents about 1,100 of the 3,000 employees at the company’s three plants that make up the Mon Valley Works outside of Pittsburgh. In 2019, U.S. Steel said it would spend $1.2 billion to modernize the plants, then canceled those plans two years later when it acquired a new mill in Arkansas.


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When a union calls it greedy it leaves you wondering what the union considers to be greedy.

    The Gentle Grizzly in reply to rhhardin. | December 18, 2023 at 7:17 pm

    And, how hard did those unions fight to keep out the more modern methods used by Nucor and the mini-mills? US Steel just, flat, was no longer competitive. So, they shrank, and so there were fewer union jobs to be had.

    henrybowman in reply to rhhardin. | December 18, 2023 at 10:15 pm

    I know! Wanting to retain more of the money you worked to earn.

      Milhouse in reply to henrybowman. | December 19, 2023 at 1:16 am

      It’s the company that created that wealth, not the workers. The workers receive every penny that they are responsible for creating, and more. To claim that it’s the workers who create the wealth, and their wages are merely the portion that they “retain”, is literally Marxism; that is Marx’s “key insight”, which every real economist will tell you is BS.

        henrybowman in reply to Milhouse. | December 20, 2023 at 12:34 am

        I wasn’t speaking of the union’s attitude towards its own members, but its attitude towards ensuring the election of politicians that prevent the average American citizen from being able to keep what they earn (because that would be selfish of them)..

We have sold our soul…

Three requirements for national security:

Steel Manufacturing
Machine Manufacturing
Electronics Manufacturing

The US was the leader in all three as late as 1980

Today we don’t even rate as a manufacturer of those items anymore.

    Chewbacca in reply to starride. | December 18, 2023 at 7:20 pm

    You forgot about energy production.

    ThePrimordialOrderedPair in reply to starride. | December 18, 2023 at 7:30 pm

    Now, we lead in percentage of men’s room stocked with tampons.

    You see, there’s always a silver lining.

    gonzotx in reply to starride. | December 18, 2023 at 8:04 pm

    How do we build a bomber?

    It’s all pretty insane

    henrybowman in reply to starride. | December 18, 2023 at 10:21 pm

    “Steel is always about security – both our national security and the economic security of our steel communities.”
    Too bad nobody realized the same about lead before they closed the last US lead smelter.

    MattMusson in reply to starride. | December 19, 2023 at 7:26 am

    Heavy Industry is coming back to the USA because we have a solid energy situation compared to the rest of the world. Electricity is the largest cost factor in making steel. The USA has the most reliable and affordable electricity around.

    Western Europe has been hit the hardest. Going forward there will be no mass steel production in Germany. Maybe some finishing and specialty stuff. But they will move their production to the USA. German car manufacturers are moving production to the USA. And, BASF, the worlds 2nd largest chemical maker, announced the company is moving to Louisiana.

      jagibbons in reply to MattMusson. | December 19, 2023 at 8:42 am

      The USA won’t lead the world in electricity generation or cost for long if the Democrat and WH agenda continue to move forward.

I don’t really know what the fuss is about. Japan is our ally. Besides, they can own the factory, but they’re sure not taking it home with them. If we were to really need it for wartime manufacturing, we could “borrow” it for as long as we liked.

God knows the U.S. government has done everything it could to make U.S. Steel viable …. for decades. Selling themselves to the Japanese may actually benefit the rest of the U.S. economy.

    Ironclaw in reply to Hodge. | December 18, 2023 at 7:25 pm

    Japan is our Ally for now, who knows what happens with that pedophile in office f****** everything up

    Milhouse in reply to Hodge. | December 19, 2023 at 1:19 am

    Exactly. This is exactly the same as those idiots who were against letting Europeans invest in building the US canals in the 19th century. I forget who it was who pointed out that it’s not as if the investors can one day decide to pick up the canals and take them back to Europe. If things go sour between us and them, they’ll have a lot of useless paper and we’ll have canals.

    UnCivilServant in reply to Hodge. | December 19, 2023 at 4:20 am

    They won’t take it to Japan, but they can opt to just close down operations when it becomes untenable, having taken whatever of value that was left. Then you have an empty, rusty building by the time the mess its the fan.

      If operations are untenable then it should shut down, and an American owner would shut it down just as quickly, because it’s worthless. And in such a case there’s nothing of value to take. But so long as the operation is profitable a Japanese owner has no more reason to close it down than an American owner would.

        jagibbons in reply to Milhouse. | December 19, 2023 at 8:44 am

        And as long as it is running, the value is here. Maybe not all the income and profit, but the value that creates the steel.

    Azathoth in reply to Hodge. | December 19, 2023 at 8:58 am

    Japan is a defeated enemy. Not an ally.

    Will they be so friendly when we move our troops out and let them re-arm?

    People seem to have completely forgotten that the Axis powers were Germany, Italy, and Japan. That they were Hitler’s willing allies.

    That their atrocities rival Germany’s.

    That the nazis are STILL seen in a very different light in Japan.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair | December 18, 2023 at 7:28 pm

I have to agree with the vegetable on this one. Steel is an industry that should not be foreign-owned.

The unions, meanwhile, can all go to hell. If they cared they would scrape together their union cash and buy US Steel, themselves. I would venture to guess that the unions have more than $14 billion in investments. Of course, we all know that union ownership of US steel would make certain that the doors were shuttered within 5 years, but at least there wouldn’t be a foreign owner of it.

$14 billion is pocket change to a lot of the tech companies and tech oligarchs. Elon OVERPAID more than $14 billion just for Twitter, which is nothing but a web site. You would think that Bezos would like to own American steel production for less than $20 billion, which he could pay for out of coins found in all of his sofas.

    The Gentle Grizzly in reply to ThePrimordialOrderedPair. | December 19, 2023 at 9:11 am

    The union would soon discover that profits and dividends do not fall from the sky, and that there are high costs in running any business, much less a steel mill.

    I would get a great deal of pleasure watching them deal with all of the alphabet agencies that make any sort of industry in this country next to impossible. All those candidates they spent all that money on who brought them these agencies.

Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA) is right about this. Trump backed idiot Mehmet Oz was a loser to begin with. Thank goodness the people of PA did not listen to Trump. This is a win for America.

    gonzotx in reply to JR. | December 18, 2023 at 8:08 pm

    Jr never disappoints

    President Trump to you, has fought hard to make America great again and bring manufacturing back

    I’m sure Oz would have fought for the same
    With all the cheating in the elections, how could one surmise that Fetterman actually won?

      JohnSmith100 in reply to gonzotx. | December 18, 2023 at 8:44 pm

      Some people are too dumb to understand that manufacturing base is crucial for America.

      artichoke in reply to gonzotx. | December 18, 2023 at 9:04 pm

      Would Oz have fought for the same? Is any Republican fighting like that? Both parties have big phony principles. Capitalism can be as bad as socialism. Both parties are wrong. What we need is “me-first-ism” where the government protects the interests of Americans. Sometimes that will require freer trade, sometimes restrictions on trade.

    JohnSmith100 in reply to JR. | December 18, 2023 at 8:20 pm

    Wages may stay the same, but transfer of IP and profits does harm America.

      Milhouse in reply to JohnSmith100. | December 19, 2023 at 1:21 am

      How does it harm America?

        Stuytown in reply to Milhouse. | December 19, 2023 at 11:46 am

        A foreign owner has less incentive than a domestic owner, assuming that the domestic owner has a shred of patriotism/investment in the domestic economy and US workers. On the other hand, if Nippon decides that it will be more profitable to close US Steel, there’s no reason why it wouldn’t. You can say that his scenario is unlikely, but it’s certainly logical.

      The Gentle Grizzly in reply to JohnSmith100. | December 19, 2023 at 9:15 am

      The plant(s) close(s), there are zero jobs.

      Japan buys the plant(s), “the profits go to Japan!!!!”. but American jobs remain, both in steel, and all of the businesses supplying the plant(s), the stores the workers shop in, the plumbers and electricians and handy-men they hire, etc.

        Nippon Steel doesn’t care about american jobs or community. I’m not for or against the acquisition. Just being realistic. Nippon Steel would be better served by building their own new facility in right to work state that is close to their biggest american customer, such as for example toyota truck factory in san antonio or other. They are investing in liability that might take 10 years to break even, with union labor that will throw wrench in the gears.

Only $14.9 billion?

“U.S. Steel, Which Helped America’s ‘Arsenal of Democracy’ Defeat Japan in WWII, Sold to Japanese Company“

    JohnSmith100 in reply to gonzotx. | December 18, 2023 at 8:26 pm

    Before China was stealing American tech, there was Japan. And like China, Japan broke our laws right and left.

      artichoke in reply to JohnSmith100. | December 18, 2023 at 9:01 pm

      And that “iconic” Republican/former “Democratic Socialist”, Ronald Reagan , was president at the time and let them do it freely. LBO’s, industry moving to Japan, it was morning again in America all right. I woke up after college and found the country being sold out from under me as I started my career in the Reagan years.

GOD help me I am going with Fetterman on this one …

    DaveGinOly in reply to jqusnr. | December 18, 2023 at 11:33 pm

    I think maybe his brain re-wired itself when it was healing after his stroke. This doesn’t seem like the original Fetterman. This seems like a new, improved version.

    The Gentle Grizzly in reply to jqusnr. | December 19, 2023 at 9:18 am

    Why say that? If he is right, he is right.

Fetterman’s turning into a better senator than a lot of the Republicans!

Let Japan buy it, they’ll modernize it using their money to bribe our congress to give them insane tax breaks.
If they ever decide to become our enemy, as said above, they can’t take it home.
We get a modern steel company they get shafted.

    The Gentle Grizzly in reply to 4fun. | December 19, 2023 at 9:23 am

    They need to get that modernization past the unions. Today’s steelmaking techniques take a heck of a lot less manpower than the 100 year old methods still in use in too many plants.

The union believes it was helpful? LOLOLOLO….
Keep voting Democrat, jackass…that is where your real money comes from…and immunity from Federal prosecution.

Maybe they’ll do a remake of Gung Ho (1986) – or mash up with the Simpsons and call it “Gung Homer”.

Crazy day when I agree in principle with Fetterman.

Its going to become like the ransom of red chief for nippon steel. Labor union will never take direction from japanese management. Then nippon steel will have to dump it, just to unload liability.

Did anyone tell Fetterman Nippon Steel has no way of moving the US Steel plant to Japan?

Remember NUMMI ? 50/50 joint venture between Toyota and GM. Toyota was supposed to teach american workers about japanese manufacturing processes like kaizen and kanban. Toyota eventually gave up and walked away in disgust because labor union wasn’t trainable.