By WILL WHATLEY, Alabama Daily News
While Vice President Mike Pence was in Birmingham speaking at a fundraiser for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, he took time to speak with a handful of state leaders regarding trade with China.
Alabama Congressmen Bradley Byrne and Gary Palmer, along with Alabama Trump Victory Chairman Perry O. Hooper, Jr. and Paul Wellborn, owner of Wellborn Cabinets in Ashland, participated in a roundtable discussion centering around trade with China and its unfair practices. Vice President Pence led the discussion focused on how trade with China affects Alabama. Also participating in the discussion were Georgia Senator David Perdue and North Carolina Senator Thom Tillis.
“Paul did an outstanding job articulating the potential devastating effects China’s heavily subsidized cabinet industry is having on his company and especially its 1,500 Alabama employees,” said Hooper. “Vice President Pence promised us that he is completely committed to ‘America First’ and the president’s efforts in leveling the playing field with China. He assured us that the President would stay the course and not be sidetracked by the globalists in his hard stance on trade.”
According to Wellborn, the tariffs, which will go into effect in January, will help save some of the 1,400 jobs of people who have been working for “20, 30, 40 years” at his Ashland plant.
“We have a lot of dedicated people here and they do a wonderful job,” he added.
Hooper also said he was able to thank Vice President Pence for his support of rebuilding the military and returning the country to the Reagan doctrine of ‘peace through strength.’
“I thanked him for the selection of Montgomery as one of two F-35 reserve squadrons. His son Michael is a marine pilot and will be flying the F-35,” Hooper said. “The Vice President is such a great guy. He realizes that Alabama was instrumental in getting early momentum for President Trump’s campaign and said that he would not forget that.”