Kerry Assails Export of Jobs
Friday, April 2, 2004; Page A10
Candidate: John F. Kerry
Images: Black-and-white footage of workers leaving a shuttered factory; headlines while President Bush delivers his State of the Union address; Kerry, in color, shaking hands with construction workers, women and a veteran.
Producer: Riverfront Media
Time: 30 seconds
Audio: While jobs are leaving our country in record numbers, George Bush says sending jobs overseas "makes sense" for America. His top economic advisors say "moving American jobs to low cost countries" is a plus for the U.S. John Kerry's proposed a different economic plan that encourages companies to keep jobs here.
It's part of a detailed economic agenda to create 10 million jobs. John Kerry: A new direction for America.
Analysis: In the wake of several Bush ads accusing Kerry of favoring higher taxes, this spot represents the senator's attempt to frame the economic debate in more favorable terms.
The president never said that sending jobs overseas "makes sense." The comment is from his 2004 economic report--which does bear his signature--but the ad is misleading because the full quote is that "when a good or service is produced more cheaply abroad, it makes more sense to import it..." The net effect is to create the impression that Bush favors exporting American jobs.
Chief White House economist Gregory Mankiw has said "offshoring" of U.S. service jobs is "the latest manifestation of the gains from trade" and can be "a good thing." Treasury Secretary John Snow has said the practice is "part of trade" and "trade makes the economy stronger."
Kerry advisers acknowledge his tax proposals would have only a modest impact on companies moving jobs overseas. The candidate has repeatedly called for creating 10 million jobs but has yet to offer detailed plans on accomplishing that.
Counterattack: Two hours after the ad's release, the Bush campaign moved up the announcement of its second anti-Kerry spot this week. The ad recycles unproven charges that Kerry would raise taxes by $900 billion, although he has no such plan, and gasoline levies by 50 cents, a decade-old position. The commercial says Kerry voted against easing the marriage tax penalty 22 times and against child tax credits 18 times. The Kerry camp says most of these were in Republican legislation he opposed for other reasons, that he voted for marriage tax relief several times and that his current plan would expand child tax credits. The most recent vote was Mar. 10, when the Senate approved requiring future tax cuts to be offset by equal spending cuts or tax hikes.
© 2004 The Washington Post Company