Wait! What? Biden wrongly says Pennsylvania company considering shutting down

Joe Biden at the first presidential debate in Cleveland, Ohio on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020. (C-SPAN video screenshot)

Wait! What?

That likely was the immediate reaction from officials with Wabtec, a locomotive builder in Erie, Pennsylvania, after Joe Biden announced the company was thinking about closing.

It’s not.

Erie News reported Biden’s comment to reporter Ethan Kibbe “raised some concerns on the plant floor at Wabtec.”

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“I heard today there’s a locomotive plant thinking of shutting down here,” Biden said. “I’m going to invest literally in high speed rail. I have a record on that. I’m the (inaudible). We’re going to create tens of thousands of good paying jobs.”

The company immediately addressed its workers in a statement: “We want to set the record straight and let you know this statement is untrue. This site and plant are an integral part of the business and our community. As Wabtec’s design and development hub, the Erie site is leading cutting-edge innovations.”

Kibbe said that after the interview, Biden corrected his statement to say he had heard of layoffs.

But the original interview was posted on Facebook.

Fox News reported Wabtec had layoffs earlier this year, diminishing the company’s workforce at the Erie site to about 1,200 workers.