OPERATION GRANT FOR OHIO
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Originally Published: Cincinnati.com, Jim Mackinnon, Akron Beacon Journal
The Lincoln Project and Republican Voters Against Trump are releasing a video advertisement called “Goodyear” which attacks President Donald Trump for calling for a boycott of the Akron tiremaker.
Trump called for the boycott this week following news reports showing a Goodyear tire factory training slide out of Topeka, Kansas, saying employees can’t wear MAGA or Blue Lives Matter attire or other political materials in the workplace but can show support for Black Lives Matter and LGBTQ pride.
The Lincoln Project ad, which will air digitally and via broadcast, is part of an ongoing partnership in Ohio: Operation Grant. The Lincoln Project said it plans to spend $425,000 airing “Goodyear” starting Friday through next week in northeast Ohio media markets of Cleveland, Akron and Youngstown.
Trump has been roundly criticized by Democrats, union leaders and others in the greater Akron area for calling for a Goodyear boycott. Goodyear is one of Akron’s oldest and largest employers with about 3,000 people at its corporate headquarters and about 60,000 other employees around the world.
“The president’s attacking an American company that provides well-paying jobs. Operation Grant couldn’t be more needed,” Tim Miller, political director of Republican Voters Against Trump, said in a news release.
Reed Galen, co-founder of The Lincoln Project, “Ohioans are already dealing with the rising unemployment caused by Trump’s failed response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The last thing they need is to suffer the economic aftershocks of a presidential temper tantrum.”
The Lincoln Project is made up of current and former Republicans working to defeat Trump in the November election.
Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. subsequently said the training slide was not created or approved by corporate offices in Akron but made locally for a presentation solely in the company’s Topeka, Kansas, tire factory to explain acceptable workplace attire.
Chief Executive Officer Rich Kramer said in a letter to customers Thursday that the company has clarified its policy to allow employees to wear clothing supporting Blue Lives Matter. The company does not endorse political organizations, parties or individuals and continues to ask employees not to express support for any candidates or political party in the workplace, Kramer said. The company does support law enforcement, he said.
Some conservative blogs have said Trump appears to have caused Goodyear to backtrack with the company telling employees they can wear Blue Lives Matter attire that shows support for law enforcement.