"I said, 'You know, this country has done a lot for General Motors". He continued, "We are now looking at cutting all @GM subsidies", including for electric cars.
The restructuring reflects changing North American auto markets as manufacturers continue to shift away from cars towards SUVs and trucks.
In a statement Monday, Barra said the massive restructuring is meant to "continue our transformation to be highly agile, resilient and profitable, while giving us the flexibility to invest in the future".
Most of the factories to be affected by GM's restructuring build cars that won't be sold in the USA after next year. The company has sold about 22,000 through September and in August sought an exclusion from 25 percent USA tariffs imposed on Chinese vehicle imports.
As well as Detroit-Hamtramck, assembly plants in Oshawa, Ontario and Warren, Ohio will close.
Barra was scheduled to meet with White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow on Monday following the automaker's announcement, a White House official said.
In August, GM also threw a lifeline to its Australian R&D operations, announcing plans to recruit an extra 150 engineers to create a 500-strong local team - including designers - that will become a key unit of GM's Advanced Vehicle Development division working on cutting-edge technologies such as autonomous and electric vehicles.
GM will jettison the Buick LaCrosse, Chevrolet Impala and Cadillac CT6 sedans next year. Barra said the industry is changing rapidly and moving toward electric propulsion, autonomous vehicles and ride-sharing, and GM must adjust.
While industry-wide passenger vehicle sales were down 13.2 percent through the first nine months of the year, pick-up truck and SUV sales rose 8.3 percent.
In a statement, GM said that the company was "committed to maintaining a strong manufacturing presence in the US, as evidenced by our more than $22 billion investments in USA operations since 2009". The second-largest domestic automaker had already scrubbed plans for a second assembly line in Mexico past year due to declining passenger auto sales. "We are going to be looking at certain subsidies regarding electric cars and others and whether they should apply or not".
But the single largest batch of job cuts by a USA automaker in 17 years wasn't greeted as grim news by shareholders.
Baier said it is uncommon to see a president go after a single company, but he believes this tough talk will play with many Americans, particularly in the Heartland.
Its North American salaried workforce, including engineers and executives, will shrink by 15 percent, or about 8,000 jobs. GM said the cuts will boost automotive free cash flow by $6 billion by the end of 2020 and result in one-time charges of up to $3.8 billion in the fourth quarter of this year and first quarter of 2019. So I said: "'Then put a auto that is selling well in there but get it open fast'". GM has said higher commodity prices will cost the company $1 billion this year.
GM opened the Lordstown plant in the late 1960s in the southwest corner of Trumbull County.