Trump to Toughen Up 'Buy American' Rules

Executive order will shake up hiring, procurement policies
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 18, 2017 3:49 AM CDT
Trump to Sign 'Buy American, Hire American' Order
President Donald Trump points to a slogan on a hat during a "Make America Great Again" rally at Orlando Melbourne International Airport on Feb. 18, 2017, in Melbourne, Fla.   (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

President Trump is planning to deliver on a key campaign promise Tuesday with an executive order tightening up "Buy American" and "Hire American" rules, White House officials say. A senior official told reporters Monday that the Buy American part of the order, which Trump plans to sign at the Snap-on Inc. toolmaker's headquarters in Wisconsin, will maximize "Made in America" content in government procurement policies and get rid of waivers, free-trade agreement exemptions, and other loopholes "to stop the foreign cheaters from using taxpayer funds to steal our jobs, to shutter our steel mills and offshore our factories," Politico reports.

As for "Hire American," officials say Trump plans to make good on his promise to stop the H-1B visa program being used as a "cheap labor program," Reuters reports. The order will call on the departments of Homeland Security, Labor, Justice, and State to find ways to reform the program, which critics say is being abused by outsourcing firms that specialize in finding cheaper replacements for American workers. Tech companies say they want reforms to the program to be carried out carefully, so that it returns to its intended purpose of awarding visas to the highest-skilled and highest-paid workers, reports the Washington Post. (More Buy American stories.)

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