During his afternoon City Club speech, President Barack Obama will announce a new $150-million competition meant to spur manufacturing innovation, a la "America Makes
," the 3-D printing-focused institute in Youngstown. The public-private partnership ($75 million from the Department of Defense with a private match), will focus on textile manufacturing and will be the administration's ninth such competition.
The president will also announce a $320-million competition to help small manufacturers in 12 states.
Against the looming 2016 backdrop, the news plays into the broader "federal spending vs. deregulation and private tax breaks" models of job and economic growth. House Republicans unveiled their budget proposal yesterday.
The contrast over middle-class economics will bear out as the main theme to today's address.
"What we’re trying to do together on manufacturing will really matter for middle-class wages,” U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown told the Washington Post.
Prior to the speech today, Obama will tour MAGNET (Manufacturing Advocacy and Growth Network).
“I’m pleased the President will visit MAGNET manufacturing center which continues to be a leader in helping grow manufacturing through innovation in Northeast Ohio," U.S. Sen. Rob Portman said. "I’ve worked closely with MAGNET on a number of issues including workforce training and ensuring that more products are stamped ‘Made in America.’ Ohioans have a proud manufacturing tradition, and I’m glad the President will get to hear from Ohio manufacturers firsthand. I also hope that after visiting MAGNET, he’ll join the bipartisan efforts on these important issues.”