U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown calls the decision by General Motors “shameful.” U.S. Sen. Rob Portman says he is “deeply frustrated.” U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan sees “a bad combination of greedy corporations and policymakers with no understanding of economic development.” The understandable fury and disappointment of the lawmakers and many others across Northeast Ohio came in response to GM announcing on Monday the closure of the Lordstown assembly plant in Trumbull County.

According to the company, the shutdown will take place in the new year, and Lordstown isn’t alone. GM plans to close four other plants, in Michigan, Maryland and the Canadian province of Ontario. The automaker also will reduce by 15 percent its salaried staff. In all, the job losses total roughly 14,700.

At Lordstown, the number is around 1,600 positions eliminated, a devastating blow. The surrounding community will face the absence of a mainstay, the plant going back five decades, its ripple effect adding in a big way to the local economy. All of that once seemed somewhat secure with production of the fuel-efficient Chevy Cruze and GM having recast itself after its near-death experience, rescued by American taxpayers.

The domestic auto industry has added nearly 350,000 jobs since the recession. So it remains in much better shape. There is hope that Lordstown may yet avoid closure, GM as it sorts through options choosing another car to build there. At the same time, events of late have been moving in the direction of the announcement.

The auto market has been softening, especially for small and medium-sized cars, consumers preferring SUVs and light trucks. At Lordstown, workers assembled some 180,000 Cruzes last year, or nearly 70,000 fewer than five years ago. In January 2017, the plant eliminated its third shift. The second shut down in the spring.

It is telling the plants set for shuttering involve the vehicles consumers find less desirable. So like almost any company, GM must adapt to what customers want. The automaker has contended with other changes, notably, the tariffs imposed by President Trump, especially on steel products. GM and other car companies warned about the added cost, as much as $1 billion each. Now they are adjusting, Ford making its own moves, though less dramatic.

The president famously told a Mahoning audience last year about the long exodus of jobs, “They’re all coming back. They’re all coming back. Don’t move. Don’t sell your house.” More recently, he has declared, “Lots of car and other companies coming back,” touting: “Auto companies expanding at record pace.”

His renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement has been framed, in part, as restoring auto jobs. That prospect always has been a long shot. Now trade analysts project the result will make little difference on that front. GM has plans to build the Chevy Blazer in Mexico.

In a similar way, the tax cuts for corporations have been oversold as a spur to investment, let alone new jobs. On Tuesday, the president blustered about how he has been talking tough to GM executives.

More than anything, General Motors has made a strategic decision, seeing its future in electric and autonomous vehicles. It is shoring up resources to “accelerate its transformation,” as the company announcement put it. These are the choices companies face and make. The shame is that the automaker lacks a role for a plant and community so long a part of its success. It deserves to be reminded often in the coming days about the asset it now plans to give up.