Stories

The Main Street view on manufacturing jobs

A worker at a Cleveland scrap yard. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

Last week, Axios' Jonathan Swan asked Peter Navarro, Trump's trade adviser, to respond to critics who say steel tariffs are excessive. Navarro advised them "get out more often to the Heartland and see what Main Street and Trump country really look like ... We on Team Trump are astonished by the argument that America's future is in the services sector, and Americans don't want 'dirty' jobs in steel furnaces."

The big picture: That piqued the interest of Jed Kolko, chief economist at Indeed, who emailed Swan and me saying he had looked at recent county-level employment data, and combined that with 2016 presidential voting patterns. He said, "Even places that voted most strongly for Trump are primarily service-producing, not goods-producing, economies."