President Donald Trump said Thursday he would visit U.S. Steel’s taconite operations in Minnesota.
His comment came at a meeting with manufacturing chief executives held at the White House.
Mario Longhi, president and CEO of U.S. Steel, extended the invitation to Trump during introductions. He spoke following Caterpillar Executive Chairman Doug Oberhelman, who launched a discussion about a rebound in demand for heavy trucks (which are used in mines)
“What a great company. I love Caterpillar. I’ve been driving ‘em for a long time,” the president said.
“Well, come out and see us and we’ll put you into one,” Oberhelman said.
After Longhi introduced himself, Trump expressed optimism about the domestic steel industry.
“You’re going to be doing pipelines now – you know that, right?” Trump told Longhi. “We’re putting you heavy into the pipeline business because we approved the Keystone and the Dakota…they have to buy steel made in this country and pipeline made in this country.”
Longhi suggested Trump get to the root of American-made steel.
“By the way, when you come to drive trucks, come up to Minnesota to see our mines. You’ll see them (trucks) running up there,” said the steel executive.
“I’ll do it. I’ll be out there,” Trump responded.
It's unknown whether the president was serious or just being polite, but a seed has been planted.
Following the public introductions, participants continued their conversation in private.