Finally, the candidates talk manufacturing and China in second presidential debate
Last night, President Obama and Mitt Romney met for the second presidential debate of the 2012 election cycle. CNN’s Candy Crowley moderated the town hall-style debate.
The Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) is pleased that the candidates were asked questions about manufacturing, China, and trade. (In fact some questions sounded very similar to those raised by our Facebook fans.)
We’ve assembled some highlights.
I want high wage, high skill jobs. That’s why we have to emphasize manufacturing. That’s why we have to invest in advanced manufacturing. That’s why we’ve got to make sure that we’ve got the best science and research in the world. And when we talk about deficits, if we’re adding to our deficit for tax cuts for folks who don’t need them, and we’re cutting investments in research and science that will create the next Apple, create the next new innovation that will sell products around the world, we will lose that race.
if we do what I’m planning on doing, which is getting us energy independent, North America energy independence within eight years, you’re going to see manufacturing jobs come back. Because our energy is low cost, that are already beginning to come back because of our abundant energy… We’ll bring back manufacturing to America. We’re going to get through a very aggressive energy policy, 31/2 million more jobs in this country. It’s critical to our future.
Now, we’re going to have to make sure that as we trade with other nations that they play by the rules. And China hasn’t. One of the reasons — or one of the ways they don’t play by the rules is artificially holding down the value of their currency. Because if they put their currency down low, that means their prices on their goods are low. And that makes them advantageous in the marketplace.
We lose sales. And manufacturers here in the U.S. making the same products can’t compete. China has been a currency manipulator for years and years and years. And the president has a regular opportunity to label them as a currency manipulator, but refuses to do so.
On day one, I will label China a currency manipulator, which will allow me as president to be able to put in place, if necessary, tariffs where I believe that they are taking unfair advantage of our manufacturers.
When he talks about getting tough on China, keep in mind that Governor Romney invested in companies that were pioneers of outsourcing to China, and is currently investing in countries — in companies that are building surveillance equipment for China to spy on its own folks.
That’s — Governor, you’re the last person who’s going to get tough on China. And what we’ve done when it comes to trade is not only sign three trade deals to open up new markets, but we’ve also set up a task force for trade that goes after anybody who is taking advantage of American workers or businesses and not creating a level playing field. We’ve brought twice as many cases against unfair trading practices than the previous administration and we’ve won every single one that’s been decided.
When I said that we had to make sure that China was not flooding our domestic market with cheap tires, Governor Romney said I was being protectionist; that it wouldn’t be helpful to American workers. Well, in fact we saved 1,000 jobs. And that’s the kind of tough trade actions that are required.
EDITOR'S NOTE: We've pasted these quotes directly from the debate transcript so as to give a representative picture of what the candidates said.
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