Gov. Perry, do you favor spending tax dollars in the U.S. or overseas?
Here's a scenario: Let's say you own a manufacturing company in the U.S. Some of your competitors are foreign-owned firms with operations in the U.S. Your company competes with these foreign firms for U.S. government contracts.
Let's say that a foreign-owned company wins the contract in question. But after receiving federal money, that company goes ahead and meets the contract requirements by using imported products from their home country rather than purchasing products made in the U.S.
In that circumstance, taxpayer money has been circuitously sent overseas, rather than spent in support of American jobs and an American-made product. And your company is the loser in this situation...
At a recent campaign stop in Harlan, Iowa, David Tyrrel, the owner of a firm that manufactures medical equipment, asked Texas Governor Rick Perry how he would address such a situation if he were president. Tyrrel wanted to know if Perry would favor a proposal that offers incentives to health care providers to purchase equipment from U.S. manufacturers when spending federal funds.
Unfortunately, the Governor strayed away from addressing the question directly:
"I would consider it to be a good idea, and here's the reason why: foreign aid," Perry said, quickly changing the topic. "I'm for starting foreign aid at zero, and then you have a conversation about, 'Do you approve of our interests?' Now obviously when we start dealing with a global economy, we might have an ally somewhere that makes the same product as you do. That particular point in time is where you kind of get into the head-scratching side of it."
Tyrrel asked his question again, but still did not receive a direct response:
"It's not unlike when we talk about why would we give our federal dollars to a country that's displaying regularly that they don't have America's interest in mind," Perry said.
Essentially, this is an issue of "Buy America" policy. Polling by the Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) shows clear voter support across the spectrum for spending taxpayer money on American suppliers rather than overseas contractors.
Buy America works. Spending tax dollars in the U.S. helps to create and sustain good-paying U.S. manufacturing jobs. Hopefully Gov. Perry will consider the benefits of revitalizing of U.S. manufacturing.
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