Offshoring, Outsourcing... And The Republican Party
Debbie Stabenow's S. 3364, the Brings Jobs Home Act, is a pretty simple bill and a bipartisan majority of the Senate supports it. But Miss McConnell, desperate not to embarrass Mitt Romney', with his long record at Bain of outsourcing and offshoring American jobs as part of his company's very profitable business model, is filibustering the bill and keeping it from being voted on. This week, Harry Reid tried once again to bring the bill up for a vote and his attempt failed, 56 voting in favor (every single Democrat plus 4 Republicans) and 42 conservatives voting NO. The official summary of the bill would probably be one of the least contentious pieces of legislation for American voters and support is practically universal:
But the contrast between President Obama's position and Romney's position is to dangerous for Republicans to allow a vote that would give Obama a victory, regardless of how Americans feel about it. Although two of the most vulnerable Republicans, Scott Brown (MA) and Dean Heller (NV), facing tough reelection battles crossed the aisle and voted with the Democrats, most Republicans feel their voters are stupid enough to ignore this kind of vote. Hatch knows the zombie base in Utah isn't going to defeat him over this in November and Bob Corker, Roger Wicker and John Barrasso are safe making the same assumptions about Tennessee, Mississippi and Wyoming voters. A key component of Republican strategy for taking over the government in November has always been pure obstructionism-- and blocking job creation is crucial to the strategy.
...With job creation the top issue this campaign season, and outsourcing being blamed as a big contributor to the high unemployment rate, Democrats saw the bill as an election-year winner. Sponsored by Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Michigan, who is running for reelection, the bill made it to the top of the "to-do list" for Congress President Barack Obama unveiled earlier this year.
The Bring Jobs Home Act would provide a 20% tax break for the costs of moving jobs back to the United States and would rescind business expense deductions available to companies that are associated with the cost of moving operations overseas.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, had warned Democrats before the vote that his party would want to amend the bill-- possibly with hot-button issues like repealing the health care reform law or extending the Bush-era tax cuts for all income levels.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, responded that those amendments were not germane to the bill and he would not allow votes on them.
In addition, Republican aides called attention to opposition by business groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers, who generally support Republicans.
In a letter to senators this week, the Chamber of Commerce called the bill "misguided" and said it "would hamper American worldwide companies' competitiveness, increase complexity in the Internal Revenue Code, and threaten economic growth."
The Chamber said it would count how senators voted on this motion in their annual "How they Voted" scorecard.
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