President Donald Trump's public battle against iconic Wisconsin manufacturer Harley-Davidson is receiving support from the motorcycle community gathered in Sturgis, The New York Times reported Saturday.
Harley-Davidson Inc announced in June that it would be shifting production overseas for motorcycles shipped to the European Union, to avoid the impacts of President Trump's trade wars.
Surprised that Harley-Davidson, of all companies, would be the first to wave the White Flag. I fought hard for them… https://t.co/cTQIqsyfbK— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump) 1529962086.0
Reporting from Sturgis, The Times noted that, "as leather-clad baby boomers revved engines, drank beer and swayed to classic rock ballads, Mr. Trump’s influence was palpable."
The newspaper spoke to several motorcycle enthusiasts who were siding with Trump over the iconic company.
“I’m riding my last Harley,” said Mr. Rathbun, 67, a retired truck driver riding the 40th Harley he has owned. “It was American made, and that’s why we stood behind them.”
“They need to keep them here in the United States, especially if they’re going to sell them here,” said Gary Panapinto, 63, a machinist from Illinois. “I think Trump is just trying to protect jobs in the U.S.”
“They’re always advertising that they’re made in America, so I don’t think they should do it,” argued Oliver Lapointe, 70, a New Hampshire retiree. “They’re greedy.”
Though, as CNN noted, Sturgis may more accurately be a microcosm of Trump's base than a representation of the views in America. Most of those traveling to Sturgis for vacation are affluent, white, older Americans.
"You are fake news!" Carson Davis of Texas shouted at the network. "Just ask our Lord and savior Donald Trump!"
A Harley-Davidson should never be built in another country-never! Their employees and customers are already very an… https://t.co/iTUQaIXwHJ— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump) 1530015469.0
President Trump is currently on a golfing vacation at his Bedminster resort, but has an afternoon photo-op with the "Bikers for Trump" Political Action Committee.
Bikers for Trump describes itself as a "grassroots organization of patriotic citizen crusaders who are committed to supporting President Trump's agenda and upholding American liberties."
"Our goal for 2018 is to identify and help elect gubernatorial, senatorial and congressional members who will support and help enact President Trump's Make America Great Again promise," the group claims. "Our mission is to recruit like-minded political activists for the purpose of re-electing President Trump in 2020."
Harley-Davidson should stay 100% in America, with the people that got you your success. I’ve done so much for you,… https://t.co/kNmruD0swh— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump) 1530113184.0