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Thanks so much Larry for that generous introduction. And thank you to Beth Chappell for the invitation to join you this afternoon. This is my first time back in Michigan speaking from this podium in my new job as President of the National Association of Manufacturers. It is good to be back. . .
I'm here to talk about some of the challenges faced by the auto industry and manufacturers all across America. At the NAM, we do a lot of research. One of our recent reports documented the fact that external cost pressures add 22.4 percent to the cost of manufacturing in the U.S. relative to our nine major trading partners.